Gallego, Valenzuela will draw from experience to address homelessness in Phoenix

Phoenix mayoral candidates Daniel Valenzuela (left) and Kate Gallego speak at a forum on Health, Housing and Homeless in central Phoenix on Jan. 29, 2018. /Photo by Laura Gómez/Arizona Mirror

 

By Laura Gómez | Arizona Mirror

Kate Gallego shared examples of existing programs she’s worked on that would continue to guide her policy on housing and services for homeless people, while Daniel Valenzuela centered the discussion around his personal experiences with housing instability as a child during a mayoral forum on health, housing and homelessness Tuesday.

Both stressed that, as mayors, they’d be partners with stakeholders interested in solving the housing affordability and homelessness crisis.

Gregory McOsker, 42, attended the forum. He was homeless and addicted to drugs, and with the help of Circle the City and Native American Connections he’s now housed and employed. He said the biggest needs are “training and compassion.”

“There’s a need to train people better to deal with chronically homeless and people with mental health issues,” Mcosker said. “First responders, police officers, the courthouse, case managers… They need to be compassionate for the issues I’ve been through.”

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