Robert Holden, a City Council Reform Party candidate in District 30, who will also appear on the Republican, Conservative, and Dump de Blasio party lines, wrote the second half of the policy paper.
“The plan addresses not only affordable housing, but prevention of homelessness and emergency shelter placement,” he said. “It shifts the placement of individuals and families away from hotels and shelters and toward safe spaces provided by local faith-based organizations, which have proven to be better able to handle individualized needs of this population.”
Holden said advisory committees could be formed by community boards where the “best and brightest minds” could counsel the homeless and help them with resumés, finding employment and finding apartments. Many churches and not-for-profits are interested in providing immediate short-term housing as part of their missions.
“There are convents that stand empty. We can put families in there and make better use of those spaces,” Holden said, contending former Mayor Michael Bloomberg put faith-based organizations on the sidelines as the crisis began by overlegislating requiring licenses and fees forcing volunteers to opt out.
“These churches and organizations are dying to help in regard to homelessness,” Holden said. “It’s time to let them back into the game.”