Willing landlords can help end homelessness 

No one should be without a safe and affordable place to live. Individuals and families experiencing homelessness need homes. This is the simple solution to ending homelessness. The complexity arises in finding homes. Limited affordable housing supply in Ventura County, extremely low vacancy rates, and prohibitive and increasing rents add to the challenge.  

A community response to homelessness is needed. Landlords play an integral role in helping house those who need it most. Landlords hold the key for homeless members of our community. Not only do landlords help individuals and families take charge of their own lives by providing housing, they also make our community a better place to live.  

Our county includes a network of programs to assist households experiencing homelessness. The success of each of these programs relies upon the development of partnerships with landlords. Key elements to building these relationships include understanding the core business needs and concerns of landlords and addressing them realistically, with honesty and accountability.  

When landlords partner with social service programs assisting homeless households, they have the opportunity to receive important benefits: Vacancies are filled and rents are stabilized; advertising costs are reduced or eliminated; tenants are attached to needed services; case management is available to provide resources and support for tenants and landlords alike; tenants are pre-screened and versed on “smart” renting, including good neighboring and property care; mitigation is available if tenancy problems arise; and eviction prevention efforts are made.

Ending homelessness IS possible. Veterans, families, couples, transition-aged youth and single adults become homeless for myriad reasons. Appropriate housing and case management support lead to stability and success for these populations. Are you or someone you know a landlord willing to rent to a homeless household? Your compassion and your housing resources could help someone find a way home. Ending homelessness is a benefit to everyone in our community.

Please contact:

Amy Luoma,
Housing Specialist County Consultant
amy.luoma@ventura.org               

Econo-speak: soft words with harsh meanings

The following is a list of politically abstract (PA), nice-sounding, “feel good” words that have been in vogue with the business world and news media the past few years. After each “econo-speak,” “feel-good” term, I present my own true and real definition:

Austerity: Make life miserable for the poor
so the rich can live better and get richer.

Downsizing: Firing employees at the bottom of the company.

Restructuring: Firing some people near the top (never the board members of CEO).

Relocating: Firing people here and hiring people in China, India, Pakistan or Mexico.

Global markets: Overseas markets, where American companies can obtain cheapo labor.

Globalism: Creating a world environment to raise living conditions in poor countries while lowering American living standards.

Competitiveness: Lower American wages (not for CEOs and board members) to compete with cheap labor in China and other countries.

Free trade: Use “free” labor in other countries to replace higher-paid American workers.

Outsourcing: Fire your own employees and hire cheaper workers from someone else (at lower wages).

Recession: People at the bottom are out of work.

Depression: Many high-paid executives in many companies are out of work, too.

Supply-side economics: Make the top 10 percent richer, while everyone else becomes poorer (often called “Reaganomics”). Money trickles upward, and not downward!

Upscale: Filthy rich.

Equal Justice: Lots of justice for those who can afford good attorneys, and jail for those who cannot.

Law and order: Law for those with good attorneys, and jail for those who cannot.

Gun control: Make streets safe for criminals by taking guns away from law-abiding citizens.

Stock market: A gambling place for the rich and super-rich.

Lottery: A gambling place for the poor.

Economist: Professional “witch doctor” who rarely makes correct predictions.

Unemployment statistics: false, highly gamed, misleading data which are always lower than the real, actual figures, especially during election years.

Trade agreements: Agreements negotiated by stupid idiots in our State Department, to benefit those in other nations while screwing American workers.

John Jay
Oxnard