Resources on homelessness
Decades of research have shown laws that criminalize the homeless do not address underlying causes, have no positive affects on ending homelessness, and, in fact, make the road back into housing more difficult. The following links and documents support the legitimacy of our proposals and point toward positive alternatives.
Published by the Sturm College of Law at the University of Denver, this report analyzes the economic and social price of enforcing laws targeting homeless people, adjudication, and jail time. The report take into account over 350 such laws in Colorado's largest cities, but take special note of Denver as a key case study for the state. It goes on to suggest effective alternatives for the legal and criminal justice system.
Better than anything else out there, this study unpacks the specific's of Denver Unauthorized Camping Ban and the impact of that law as it has been experienced by Denver's homeless. The report makes the connection between changes in people's behavior due to lost sleep, the increasing rates of homeless individuals we see in new parts of the metro-area thanks to "move-alongs", and more.
DU's Burnes Institute on Poverty and Homelessness publishes a yearly synopsis on the state of homelessness and affordable housing in Colorado. They demonstrate the dramatic gap between currently available resources and the amount of funding needed to actually overcome homelessness in the metro area.
The National Law Center on Poverty & Homelessness explains how despite a lack of affordable housing and shelter space, many cities like ours have chosen to criminally punish people living on the street for doing what any human being must do to survive. This extensively researched document provides substantial data on the pitfalls of criminalization strategies, and points toward productive and morally-centered alternatives.