Coalition for the Homeless Statement on HOPE Survey

NEW YORK — The following statement from Coalition for the Homeless is in response to the Department of Homeless Services’ release of its Homeless Outreach Population Estimate (HOPE) Survey of unsheltered homelessness in New York City, conducted on January 27, 2020.

“The flawed methodology of the HOPE estimate means it is certainly an undercount – there are many more homeless New Yorkers who are not reflected in this point-in-time count. Even so, the latest HOPE numbers provide further evidence that Mayor de Blasio’s push to forcibly remove homeless New Yorkers from the subways via the recently disbanded Subway Diversion Program has simply led to an increase in the number of individuals sleeping rough on the streets. But it is even worse than harassing homeless New Yorkers out of one public space to another: Mayor de Blasio has closed off opportunities for people who have absolutely nowhere else to turn and significantly eroded any progress that outreach workers might have been making in building trust. This makes it exponentially harder to offer shelter, housing, and services to those who need it most. Forcing homeless New Yorkers from the subways to the streets isn’t a solution – affordable and supportive housing and better, safer shelters are. That is the real work this Mayor should be doing,” said Giselle Routhier, Policy Director at Coalition for the Homeless.