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The fight against youth homelessness is only growing, but for many it remains off the radar District News

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With more than 9,000 people between the ages of 12 and 24 battling homelessness every night, it is alarmingly clear that the crisis is reaching a tipping point and it is not getting better. With the approach of Youth Homelessness Day, the Linking Communities Network is trying to raise awareness of an issue that can often be invisible. Deb Longhurst and Barb Smith of the Linking Communities Network have worked hard to help young people from Griffith and the surrounding areas find stability and housing, but the money is simply not there. “We have three full-time employees with young people. They all work, so Barbara and I, as managers, took clients … in fact, more homeless people than employees and resources,” said Ms. Longhurst. “There’s no emergency housing. There’s only a youth shelter, and it’s always at full capacity … there’s no way,” Ms. Smith added. “We call on the state and federal governments to consider housing for young people as a priority because they are the last cabs in the rank and they just don’t get anything. The only way to solve the problem of homelessness is housing.” A huge problem they face is the lack of centralization in state and federal governments, leading to problems that create long-term solutions. “The big problem is that there is no holistic approach to governance. As for housing, their policy is that they don’t want to put anyone under the age of 18 in a motel, so they expect that we can support this young man, even if we don’t have the resources, ”Ms. Smith said. “All politics work against each other.” IN OTHER NEWS: Ms. Longhurst added that the recent budget has invested money in much-needed services to combat domestic violence and mental health, but for young people in general there is still very little. Nothing ever happens to young people. Most homeless organizations that are funded to do what we do are women’s shelters or “everyone who wants to.” They are united. We see a gap between the amounts of funding as long as we all do the same job. ”“ Our youth is last on the list. In everything, too – young people are seen as “Well, why don’t they just go home?” It’s not all doom and gloom, with some success lately. LCN recently partnered with Argyle Housing to rent 13 homes to young people at a subsidized price so that at least some of them could find housing. “One of the things we do well here is to think outside the square,” Ms. Smith said. Our journalists make every effort to provide local, up-to-date news to the community. Here’s how you can access our trusted content:

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