The city of Phoenix has become the first in the entire country to make room for every homeless veteran. They have instituted a program designed to end homelessness among US veterans. For many, their homelessness status began almost as soon as they ended their military service.
Phoenix is the capital, and largest city, of the U.S. state of Arizona, as well as the sixth most populous city nationally, after New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Houston, and Philadelphia.
In 2011, there were 222 chronically homeless veterans here, a vulnerable, hard-to-reach population of mostly middle-age men, virtually all battling some type of physical or mental malady, along with substance abuse. Federal and city officials acknowledged that was not an exact number, but it is widely regarded as the best measure of the veteran population.
This works best in places like Phoenix, where there is room to expand. But, in cities like Los Angeles, building is expensive and competition is stiff for existing affordable-housing units, which are already scarce.