California’s Homelessness Crisis Needs Immediate Action. Here’s What We Can Do

Everyone agrees there is a humanitarian crisis on the streets of California. But the homelessness population is not a monolith. It is a diverse set of individuals and families who ended up without a roof over their head for myriad reasons. Yet politicians across the state continue to point to the state’s housing crisis as not just the main driver, but in some cases, the only driver of why this crisis has escalated so quickly.

For the “hidden homeless,” those who are couch-surfing, living in temporary motels or otherwise housing-insecure, access to affordable and stable housing is critical. These are often families with working parents who have become victims of the state’s ongoing affordability crisis. We must build more housing now, no excuses.

The fact is that addiction re-wires the brain into prioritizing drugs or alcohol over everything else, including housing, food and other basic necessities. No amount of new housing is going to help those whose humanity has been stripped away by addiction. We need other solutions, which is why the California Business Roundtable has consistently supported billions of dollars in funding to increase comprehensive services to the homeless.

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