PBN: Five Questions With: Eric L. Hirsch

The report, called “How to End Long-Term Homelessness in Rhode Island,” calls for greater investment by the state to counter a shortage of affordable apartments and increased rental subsidies for families and individuals.

Hirsch, a graduate of the University of Chicago, is an expert in urban sociology and homelessness. He spoke to the Providence Business News about his findings.

PBN: Why isn't homelessness a greater priority in Rhode Island?

HIRSCH: To me, the big message that we've not gotten across is it's very much a problem that we can solve. I think people think about shelters being the solution to homelessness. Like tonight, that's how we're going to count the homeless people, by how many are in the shelters. It's not a solution. It actually institutionalizes homelessness.

PBN: How are the homeless counted?

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