St. Andrew Lutheran Church opens the Winter Hospitality Overflow for homeless families Nov. 1. The church has hosted this winter shelter for 13 years and it is heartbreaking to see an increasing number of children sleeping on our gym floor every year. In the Vancouver and Evergreen school districts, 2,200 children are homeless. Without stable housing, these children will find it almost impossible to succeed and thrive in school.
Prop 1, the Affordable Housing property tax levy, will directly benefit these children and begin addressing the severe shortage of affordable housing. This is not a new, untried approach, since 471 cities have already established similar funds.
Gandhi said, “The measure of a civilization is how it treats its weakest members.” We have a chance to do that by approving an Affordable Housing Fund. And, in addition, it will serve as a bellwether for Clark County and other cities to encourage a county-wide approach to the difficult, seemingly intractable problem of housing our most vulnerable citizens.