Politics & Money

Democratic candidates take a stand on homelessness

Former HUD Secretary Castro lays out a plan

This week presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg came out against a homeless ordinance in Las Vegas.

The ordinance would criminalize homelessness in the city, but Buttigieg, mayor of South Bend, Indiana, announced his opposition to it.

“Homelessness is a moral crisis that defies easy solutions, and the best way to address it is with smart investments in housing, supportive services and health,” Buttigieg said in a statement. “I stand with members of the homeless community and advocates in opposing this ordinance.”

Shortly after that, former Secretary of the Department of Housing and Urban Development and presidential candidate Julián Castro voiced his opinion on the bill, sarcastically saying the homeless should be treated like people.

“Former big city mayor, housing secretary and presidential candidate here,” Castro said in a tweet. He then proceeded to list three things he could do to help end homelessness, concluding with, “But first you have to see people without homes as…people. Shocking.”

Castro’s three suggestions are:

1. Increase the stock of affordable housing

2. Make housing vouchers an entitlement

3. End housing discrimination

This isn’t the first time Castro has stood up for housing matters in this election.

At the October debate, Castro criticized the moderators for closing with a question about comedian Ellen DeGeneres’ controversial friendship with former President George W. Bush without asking any questions about housing and other critical issues.

A week earlier, Castro had challenged the debate moderators via Twitter to ask a housing question.

And a few days before the debate, at the CNN town hall on LGBT equality, Castro called on HUD Secretary Ben Carson to resign due to his comments on transgender people.

But if you like the stand the former HUD secretary is taking on housing in his campaign, just be careful about getting too attached just yet – his campaign has struggled to keep up on recent weeks. In October, Castro announced he needed $800,000 before the end of the month in order to carry on with his campaign.

While he did meet that goal and was able to stay in the race, it does leave his campaign on shaky grounds.

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