Despite the best efforts of government and private aid agencies, there are people in Oklahoma City and everywhere else who fall through every crack until nothing is left but jail, the emergency room and the streets.
But those agencies are making an effort locally to implement a national program that not only helps the city's most vulnerable residents, but also could have a significant impact on the blow that homelessness has on city finances.
The Homeless Alliance, federal Housing and Urban Development Department, Oklahoma City Housing Authority and other groups have started to implement the national 100,000 Homes campaign here, which aims to put homeless people in permanent homes as a vehicle to get them more help and keep them out of hospitals and jails.
“These people have a whole constellation of problems,” Dan Straughan, executive director of the Homeless Alliance, said of the chronically homeless. “The idea is to get them in housing, and then fix the problems that are causing them to be unsheltered people.”