Only $20 billion needed
to end U.S. homelessness
In modern-day America, homelessness has been the unmentionable epidemic for decades. The number of confirmed homeless persons has reached more than half a million in the United States in 2021, according to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). Recently, anti-homeless architecture has been appearing more and more often in public media — such as spikes under bridges, unnecessary armrests on public benches and even windowsill spikes. Most arguments against increasing support for homelessness include a mention of how expensive it is, or how hard it would be to implement affordable housing.
However in 2020, HUD determined that it would take just short of $20 billion to end homelessness within the U.S. While this can be a staggering amount of money without perspective, it comes out to only 2.7% of the projected 2021 military budget, according to the U.S. Government Accountability Office. Even further, the U.S. Department of Defense made $11.4 billion in payment errors alone. That’s more than half the estimated relief needed to end homelessness, and it was spent as a mistake. With advances in newer, faster and especially cheaper technology, eradicating homelessness could be easier than ever before. Additionally, the rise of three-dimensional or 3D printed housing makes mini-homes cheap, accessible and unbelievably easy to implement in large cities where homelessness is most prevalent. Even just as a high school student, I have had friends lose their homes, been evicted or even kicked out. They were forced to live with their families either on the streets, or with a relative 100 miles from school. Homelessness affects every aspect of the country, especially education and the economy. It's a cycle we can end.