Homelessness

Photos via the candidates' campaign websites

Manchester Mayor Joyce Craig is running for re-election next month. Her challenger, former Republican state representative Victoria Sullivan, says Mayor Craig has failed to tackle concerns about homelessness, crime and quality of life. While the two candidates disagree over the nature of the challenges facing the city, public safety is on the minds of many voters this campaign season.

Sarah Gibson for NHPR

Two groups in Manchester are launching a project to expand housing for survivors of sexual assault and domestic violence.

The initiative comes as the city struggles with an increase in homelessness, lack of affordable housing, and a spike in domestic violence and homicides by intimate partners.

Sarah Gibson for NHPR

 

Manchester’s largest homeless shelter, run by New Horizons Families in Transition, is capping the number of people allowed to stay overnight.

The limit comes after a surge in the documented number of homeless people in the city and rising safety concerns at the shelter.

Weekly N.H. News Roundup: September 13, 2019

Sep 12, 2019

We discuss how 2020 candidates fare in the third Democratic Presidential debate from a national, and Granite State, perspective.  Former Vice President Joe Biden and Sen. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts share the debate stage for the first time.  We check in on any progress in negotiations on the state budget.  And we take a closer look at the mounting pressure on leaders in Manchester to deal with a crisis of homelessness and addiction.  NHPR's Southern New Hampshire reporter Sarah Gibson is guest host.  

GUESTS:

COURTESY OF NEW HAMPSHIRE COALITION TO END HOMELESSNESS

When the temperatures dropped below zero for multiple nights last winter, local organizations and community leaders in Rochester came together to open the city's first emergency cold weather shelter. This was after other homeless shelters in the area had already filled up.

The mayors of Rochester, Dover, and Somersworth went on to form a regional council to address homelessness. 

Dan Tuohy / NHPR

Efforts to end homelessness could get a major boost this year in New Hampshire.

Cathy Kuhn, the director of the New Hampshire Coalition to End Homelessness, says there is bipartisan support for a proposed $20 million investment over two years into the state’s affordable housing fund.

The State Of Homelessness In N.H.

Jan 16, 2019

The New Hampshire Coalition to End Homelessness released its annual report in December, which found the number of homeless people in the state increased by 10 percent from 2016 t0 2018, to 1,450. We sit down with the coalition's director Cathy Kuhn to check in on the issue of homelessness, and what she thinks needs to be done to address it.

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

 

The city of Manchester is moving ahead with a plan to improve services for the homeless.

 

The Manchester Board of Mayor and Aldermen approved a plan Tuesday night after complaints from homeless residents about the quality of shelters -- as well as complaints from businesses and residents about homeless encampments in the city center and parks.

 

Courtesy of New Hampshire Coalition to End Homelessness

 

Homelessness in New Hampshire has grown over the past two years, even as the state's economy has boomed.

 

A report from The New Hampshire Coalition to End Homelessness says the number of homeless people in the state increased by 10 percent between 2016 and 2018 to a total of 1,450 people.

 

Paige Sutherland for NHPR

Some residents and business owners in Franklin say they're fed up with a homeless encampment in the area.

Franklin Police are aware of a group of what ranges between roughly a dozen people or more camping on a hill and in surrounding woods near Trestle View Park.

Cathy Hubble runs a restaurant in Franklin and says she's recently decided to close earlier because of safety concerns.

3 N.H. Mayors Announce Homelessness Coalition

Feb 12, 2018
Casey McDermott /NHPR

  The mayors of three cities in New Hampshire have come together to create a regional commission to address homelessness.

Somersworth Mayor Dana Hilliard formally released the mission of the Tri-City Joint Task Force on Homelessness on Friday. Foster's Daily Democrat reports the first step for the task force will be to create a master plan that outlines how Dover, Somersworth and Rochester can create a more robust homeless shelter for the region.

Todd Bookman / NHPR

The mayors of Dover, Rochester, and Somersworth are teaming up to address homelessness.

The mayors are putting together a homelessness task force that will include city officials, business leaders, and local non-profits.

Dover Mayor Karen Weston says the collaboration stems from a recent effort to establish a warming shelter during a cold snap.

“Because of the 10 or 14 days where we had sub-zero temperatures, many people became aware of these folks in these tent cities that are freezing.”

Laura Greenberg knows firsthand how important housing supports can be for someone experiencing a mental health crisis. The Nashua resident said being involved in the Bridge Program at Harbor Homes helped her to avert homelessness during her own crisis several years ago. Today, she's “back on track” and working as a licensed nurse assistant.

Casey McDermott, NHPR

Thursday night was the longest night of the year – and also a cold one, with temperatures dipping well below freezing. With this in mind, Catholic Medical Center's Health Care for the Homeless convened a vigil in Manchester's Veterans Park to remember the more than 50 people who died in the past year because they had no place to go on nights like this.

Todd Bookman / NHPR

A new report from a federal housing agency singled out New Hampshire as one of the states that saw the largest increase in homelessness among families with children. 

Top Homeless Organizations in Manchester Are Merging

Oct 18, 2017
Jack Rodolico/NHPR

The two leading organizations serving the homeless in Manchester are joining forces.

Liberty House in Manchester has a new leader. Jeff Nelson took the reins as Executive Director of the nonprofit two months ago. Liberty House helps up to ten veterans at a time transition from homelessness to permanent housing. Nelson spoke with NHPR’s Peter Biello about how Liberty House does its work and where he thinks it's going.

The Liberty House provides transitional housing for veterans, helping them out of homelessness. How great is the need for a service like this in New Hampshire?

Photo courtesy of 404 Not Found film

The New Hampshire Film Festival kicks off Thursday in Portsmouth, and will feature a variety of domestic and international films.

404 Not Found, a documentary about homeless youth in Manchester, will premiere at the festival opening night.

Morning Edition Host Rick Ganley spoke with producer Nancy Phillips about the film.


Panhandling in the Granite State

Aug 23, 2017
Ellen Grimm

In Manchester, recently installed signs discourage giving money to people on the streets, warning that cash could be used to buy drugs. Other communities around the state have tried a variety of approaches, as they grapple with the overlapping problems of addiction, homelessness, and mental illness. 


Via the Friends Program Facebook page

A recent agreement between a Concord homeless shelter and the federal government could help end discrimination against domestic violence survivors who face homelessness.

The settlement includes the US Department of Housing and Urban Development, the Friends Program in Concord, and a female survivor of domestic violence.

hundrednightsinc.org

A recent count of New Hampshire’s homeless population found it's on the decline, but that’s not the case everywhere in the state.

That overall state drop – reported by the New Hampshire Coalition to End Homelessness – was felt in every county of the state, except for one: Cheshire County.

Peter Biello / NHPR

Officials in Nashua say homelessness among military veterans in the greater Nashua area has been effectively ended.

Nashua Mayor Jim Donchess joined Senator Maggie Hassan and other officials in making the announcement Friday in Nashua at Harbor Homes, a non-profit that has been central to the efforts of several organizations in the region working to end homelessness.

Jack Rodolico

With snow and sub-zero temperatures projected across New Hampshire for the next few nights, the city of Concord is still without a winter shelter for its homeless residents. The shelter is slated to open soon, but not by Thursday night, when the temperature is expected to plummet. 

City councilors in Lebanon passed a controversial ordinance last week that bans camping and overnight parking on city-owned property.

Those found to be in violation could face a fine of $100.

Courtesy Quinn Dombrowski via flickr/creative commons

This August, NHPR’s Natasha Haverty and Jack Rodolico have been working on a series of stories covering issues that homeless New Hampshire residents are currently facing. Their work sheds light on aspects of life as a homeless New Hampshire citizen that many non-homeless residents don’t often witness.

Jack Rodolico, NHPR

This week, NHPR has been looking at what homelessness means in New Hampshire. As part of our series No Place to Go: Homeless in New Hampshire,  we visited the PK Motel in Effingham, and heard about how having a roof over your head isn’t the same as having a home.

So where is that line so many families are straddling, between financial insecurity and having no place to live?

Dean Christon is Executive Director of New Hampshire’s Housing Finance Authority and he joined NHPR’s Peter Biello to talk through some of these issues.

No Place To Go: Homeless At The P.K. Motel

Aug 4, 2016
Jack Rodolico

It’s nearly impossible to say how many homeless people there are in New Hampshire. And the biggest reason is that most people without a home in this state aren’t on the street or in shelters—they actually have a roof over their heads.

Some sleep on couches, and some rent rooms by the week at a place like the P.K. Motel in Effingham.

This story is the last installment in a special series on homelessness. Click here to see and listen to all the stories

Doug Kerr

Communities in New Hampshire are grappling with this question: where are homeless people supposed to go? Cities tend to answer that question by spelling out where homeless people can’t be, imposing bans on panhandling and camping. That's often called criminalizing homelessness.

We hear now about one city that recently came together to strike down one of those bans—Lebanon, N.H. Tim McNamara is on the city council there and was at the public hearing where over 100 people turned out. He joined NHPR’s Peter Biello to talk about these issues.

Natasha Haverty

Drive the highway between Manchester and Concord, and maybe you’ll catch a glimpse of the tarps and tents lining sections of the Merrimack River and the train tracks. When winter shelters close, homeless people find refuge outdoors, in public—but that’s an act that’s often against the law.

 

And with no unified policy to work with, New Hampshire’s city officials and homeless residents tend it to make it up as they go.


Natasha Haverty, NHPR

Ten years ago policy makers in New Hampshire made an ambitious promise: to end homelessness by 2016. We haven’t gotten there yet.

As part of our special series on homelessness called 'No Place To Go,' NHPR's Jack Rodolico and Natasha Haverty reported the story of one homeless man, Gene Parker, who lived on the streets of Concord for five years before being struck and killed by a car this winter.

Cathy Kuhn directs New Hampshire’s Coalition to End Homelessness and joined NHPR’s Peter Biello to discuss where the issue stands today.

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