Like every year, with the approach of winter, the government has absorbed the measures: 1,400 emergency places in Île-de-France from the first week of November, averaging 14,000 places this winter. While emergency homes are a responsibility of the state, the salons of the City Hall of Paris will accommodate 50 to 100 women during extreme cold.
All these initiatives are welcome and should be welcomed: they are answers to survival situations. But the lack of housing is not a problem of the weather or fluctuations of the thermometer, it is a problem all year round. Sleeping outside can be fatal in winter as in summer: the collective The dead street scene and counted 34 dead during the burning month of June 2018. Poverty is not more beautiful in the sun: it kills in all weather conditions.
Not to mention the fact that homeless people we see on the street are just the tip of the iceberg! How many people roam the hotel, housed on a couch, crammed in a house that is too small and unhealthy, in squats or slums?
But the opinion is shocked by what she sees. Rightly so! Because what do we ultimately seek? To hide those homeless people who are stimulating our human humanity these days when we are so cold, or are we really striving for their final exit from the street? If the horizon of our action is respect for the right to housing for everyone, a bed for three months (in the best case …) can not be the right solution. Countries have effectively intervened against exclusion from access to housing. In Quebec, Finland, the Housing First policy has produced excellent results. The number of homeless people has been divided by three in three years! Housing First is the return to the essence of the right to housing, as laid down in law in 1990.
Everyone without prior access must have access to suitable and stable housing. Accompanying work, access to the law, health, recovery of the person can not be done beyond the stability of a home. It is an understatement that this approach goes against the current operation. Homeless people are housed in an emergency shelter, followed by reintegration and then "stabilization". Every step of this staircase is subject to a check of his "ability to live". As a result, there are very few people who have reached the last step towards access to housing.
In 2017, the government launched a call for projects to select 20 areas for the implementation of the "Housing First" strategy. It is simply incomprehensible that the city has not applied Paris alongside other major cities such as Lyon, Lille, Bordeaux, Toulouse or Strasbourg. In addition to the obligation to act in the light of the human tragedy of poor housing, the "Housing First" strategy is also an economy for public finances.
A homeless homeless person receives an average of 20,000 euros in government expenditure: firefighters, hospitals, emergency shelter, police … The same person who has access to stable and adapted housing with solid support costs only … 9,000 euros for public finances!
See homeless people at home, in the metro and on the street is anything but a fatality. The solutions go beyond the fluctuations of the thermometer, we know them. It is enough "to want it.
Marie Atallah Chairman of the Social Affairs Committee of the Council of ParisDavid BelliardPresident of the group elected ecologists in the Council of Paris Galla Bridier President of the Adil 75 Baptiste de Monval Attorney and volunteer at Secours Catholique René Dutrey Responsible for "squat mission" at a NGO Anne Souyris Adjointe in the city hall of Paris, responsible for health