A weekend public forum on homelessness in Lexington included comments from a number of people living on the streets. It was called an ‘open space’ dialogue. Lafayette Hodges, who’s homeless, believes there’s interest in soliciting a broad range of ideas. “They’re asking the people that are actually living the homeless life, what they need to do about it. There’s a lot of great ideas that came out of that. They did it before they decided what to do about homelessness is ask the people,” said Hodges.
Former Urban County Council member Debra Hensely has been working on homelessness issues for decades. She says the revolving door of homelessness is ‘very expensive.’
“Housing first where you actually take individuals who are the most difficult to deal with and put them in housing and have services related t what they need. We find that the response to that is very good across the country and also we find that the results are better,” said Hensely.
Current Urban County Council member Steve Kay co-chairs the panel along with former council member Debra Hensely. Kay says any specific plans won’t likely come until the end of the year.
“What we’re trying to do is understand what the full range of issues are and how they impact the community. And out of that begin to formulate some specific recommendations,” added Kay.
Suggestions are due on Lexington Mayor Jim Gray’s desk in January.