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Gery Chico unveils homeless plan

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below, from Chico campaign...

Chico proposes steps to reduce homelessness

(CHICAGO) Mayoral candidate Gery Chico today laid out proposals to reduce homelessness in Chicago. Standing with wife Sunny in front of the Chicago Family Assistance Center on the city's west side, Chico pledged to make the goal of ending homelessness a priority and outlined three steps he would take as mayor to address the city's growing problem.

"We will spend a lot of time talking about budget shortfalls and police shortages, but homelessness is a dimension of Chicago that is desperately in need of our attention," Chico said. "We can all agree that it is unacceptable to have citizens sleeping on our streets and tens of thousands of children without a place to call home. Let's renew the fight to end homelessness and lead our city to truly world-class status."

Over the past two decades, homelessness has increased in Chicago to more than 88,000 people, including more families with children and a greater number of working poor than ever before, according to the Chicago Coalition on Homelessness. To address the estimated 15,000 Chicago Public School (CPS) students who are homeless, Chico would make CPS more accountable and coordinated in identifying homeless students, and provide them with the services they need by streamlining social service contracts, ensuring every school has a qualified Homeless Student Liaison and hiring a strong, qualified advocate to lead the Homeless Education Program, a school program that oversees the issue.

In addition to focusing on job creation as mayor, Chico would leverage the city's current resources by encouraging greater collaboration among agencies that provide services to the homeless population, and increase accountability for those agencies that receive city funds to ensure taxpayer money is efficiently utilized.

Chico would also work to pass the "Sweet Home Chicago Ordinance," which would expand access to affordable housing by directing more than $100 million to developing and rehabbing affordable housing units for families that make less than $37,000 a year.

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Lynn Sweet

Lynn Sweet is a columnist and the Washington Bureau Chief for the Chicago Sun-Times.

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This page contains a single entry by Lynn Sweet published on December 30, 2010 4:26 PM.

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