On this journey towards home, health, and hope, Pathways to Housing DC is committed to dismantling structural racism and creating a race equity culture at our agency. Our work must be grounded in and guided by racial equity and social justice. While poverty is a root cause of homelessness, we cannot talk about poverty without talking about racism. We must recognize the ways in which a history of systemic racism exacerbates homelessness for our neighbors of color.
The root causes of chronic homelessness are not personal failings. Rather, they are structural and include racism, the lack of affordable housing, and stagnant wages. In DC, 88.4% of adults experiencing homelessness are Black or African American, compared to 47.7% percent of residents of the District overall. We must recognize the ways in which a history of systemic racism exacerbates homelessness for DC residents of color.
Pathways to Housing DC commits to:
Advocate with and for the people we serve to ensure that public resources are invested in long-term solutions that dismantle systemic racism.
Build a community committed to ending systemic racism, especially in areas related to housing and access to health care.
Create opportunities with and for our neighbors to recover their lives through our housing first programs; supported employment efforts; our commitment to housing returning citizens; and our mental health work at the D.C. Superior Court.
Address our own inherent bias and participate in anti-racism and equity training.
Bridge the long-term racial divide across the City. With housing in all eight wards, every neighborhood is part of the Pathways to Housing DC community.
Listen. A critical step in our healing and our moving forward will be to listen to those most impacted by racism.
We will unite as a community to follow the path of love and hope and to channel this anguish into concrete, productive and powerful action.