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2020: A Year for Health Care and Housing Justice: A Letter from Our CEO

For 30 years, the National Health Care for the Homeless Council has helped people experiencing homelessness receive the health care they need by supporting their providers in delivering effective services. One key factor in our effectiveness over three decades has been the fact that everything we do is informed by those on the front lines of the homelessness crisis—both people experiencing homelessness and their providers. Another key factor has been that those in the Health Care for the Homeless (HCH) community help each other by sharing insights, expertise, failures, and successes. I am grateful for the many accomplishments that the Council and the HCH community achieved in 2019, and I am looking forward to a successful 2020—including at our National Conference.

We know that with upcoming national presidential and congressional elections—as well as numerous local elections—2020 will be a political year, and we want homelessness to receive attention. Solving homelessness requires political will at the federal level. However, we shouldn’t see homelessness as a political issue. Homelessness is not an urban problem or a rural problem, nor a “Red State” or “Blue State” problem. Homelessness is found in all parts of the country: it is an American problem that, for decades, has seen inadequate responses from administrations of both parties.

While solving homelessness will require political will, it should never be a partisan matter—our society’s failure on a massive scale to ensure adequate housing and health care for all its members is a human rights issue. As the Council community stands together, we can help ensure that our neighbors without homes receive the care, housing, and services they need today while working to mend the holes in our national soul that have allowed homelessness to become entrenched in our social fabric. By working together, we can help end homelessness all over our land.

In Solidarity,

Bobby Watts

Chief Executive Officer
National Health Care for the Homeless Council

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