[NEWS] Sister Mary: Homelessness has hit record levels, and snow is coming. This should be our new mayor’s immediate priority.
Sister Mary wrote an op/ed for the Philadelphia Inquirer urging Mayor Cherelle Parker to adopt long-term solutions to chronic homelessness:
"After her historic victory, Mayor Cherelle Parker is no doubt weighing countless priorities as Philadelphia’s 100th mayor. With temperatures dropping and winter approaching, Parker must make one action an immediate priority: increasing the number of emergency shelter beds in our city.
Homelessness is increasing in Philadelphia and around the country. According to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, more than 653,000 people were homeless in the United States on a single night in 2023. That’s astonishingly high, and it’s also a record. It’s 12% more than the previous year and the largest number of people reported to have experienced homelessness since the agency began using annual point-in-time surveys in 2007.
In Philadelphia, 4,725 people were homeless, according to the same survey. That’s probably better than where we were as a city before the pandemic, but it’s also higher than in 2022, when 4,489 people were homeless. At 5.25%, it’s also the largest overall annual increase in homelessness that this city has seen in at least 15 years, according to our calculations."