Proximity to the freeway. Panhandling is a numbers game.


Also all the sleazy motels are along the I17 where they go on drug binges.


Lol hi I currently live in one of those sleazy motels. Not offended tho I get it. This place sucks and if I had any other alternative I’d definitely take that shit.


Same! Haha.


Well hey neighbor! Lol


Is that cheaper or more expensive than any other alternative? Or is this like a section 8 kind of deal?


Oh and pretty much my only other alternative would be a homeless shelter which I’m trying to avoid because I’m a recovering addict that’s been in recovery for 11 years and that is the perfect way for me to start using again which I’m desperately trying to avoid


That’s a long time clean, much respect🙌🏽


Thanks buddy it’s definitely had it’s ups and downs lol


Before going to a shelter, I would look into women recovery homes/halfway homes. They can be pricey, but will sometimes work with you. Also, going to Lodestar/CASS - they should have homeless outreach workers from Community Bridges (CBI) that may point you to resources. If there is a night where you are desperate for a place, and don’t want to go to CASS, walk into a Community Bridges and let them know you don’t feel safe for the night. They will let you stay there. It sucks there. A lot. But is better than CASS. If interested, I may have a couple older resources for low income housing waitlists. Edit to add - I should also have lists of recovery homes and general costs if needed.


Have you looked into rapid rehousing?


I e. Ever even heard of it tbh


Look into the sundowner apartments on 19th Ave, all bills paid, should be cheaper than a motel


Oh no this is entirely funded by my full time job. That’s the kicker. I’m essentially homeless and after I pay for my “housing” I’m left with just about $100 for two weeks to survive. But yet I make too much to qualify for rental assistance. Go figure right? No idea where I’m gonna get the money to save for an apartment deposit… Sorry just a little salty about the entire situation lol


Expanding eligibility and availability of Section 8 vouchers is something local leaders should be begging Congress to do. You’ve been clean 11 years, you’ve got a job, a voucher would be a great addition.


A voucher would be a fucking lifesaver tbh lol


Is it common knowledge, that just the opportunity to get on the Section 8 list is like a lottery? Just to get the opportunity to wait several more years? Mayors across the country should link up and start pressuring Congress. Let’s hope this kind of thinking takes hold soon.


Is there an apartment that you could move to that would be cheaper than your current arrangement (not counting the deposit)? I don't know if you are talking about just governmental assistance, but [St. Vincent de Paul](https://www.stvincentdepaul.net/get-help/rent-and-utility-bill-assistance) offers assistance of all kinds, including rental assistance as well...


Oh really? I didn’t know that. I’m gonna have to get ahold of them thank you. And yeah absolutely I found a studio for like 985 or something but my biggest challenge is actually having 1. The money for the application fee and 2. Deposit. But I’m definitely gonna call st vincent de Paul


Let us know how it works out!


I just tried calling the number to see what I might need and they’re not doing any in person interviews rn because of Covid so you have to leave a message and THE MAILBOX IS FULL 😭


Well it is the weekend, and the website says their office is only open Monday through Friday, so I would try again Monday morning, you probably would have a better chance of talking to a real person. I wouldn't lose hope on them just yet, I have heard a lot of people have gotten help through them!


Look up rhino. It allows you to pay a few dollars a month instead of giving a sum of money. Alot of apartment companies use it now. It's like deposit insurance in a way


Oh well that’s cool as shit thank you


No probs!


Do you mind if I ask how much you’re paying to stay at the motel a month? Wouldn’t it be cheaper for a rental?


No you’re absolutely correct there. For 15 nights I paid 1011. While it’s absolutely cheaper to rent an apartment this situation was sprung on me with no warning and I didn’t have money saved for a deposit + first months rent. So I’m looking into alternatives like renting a room. But for now this is the best I can do


Sorry this is your situation, and props to you for making it work. It’s shitty that it has to come to this.


Yeah it still baffles me that this is my life now. When this year started I had a good apartment, a good job, a boyfriend that I thought was perfect and two best friends that I thought were my ride or die. Now I have no local friends, got dumped, lost my apartment, and even lost that job. The only thing I have going for me anymore is a better job than before lol


Hang in there!


you are an incredible individual! 11years in recovery is fucking amazing! You should be celebrated w/MORE assistance for your strength & dedication for a better life. thank you for sharing. something has to change for those of us doing the work & succeeding with overcoming addiction.


Yeah, on Greenway they’re always gathered in front of/around the La Quinta or behind the 7/11.


I can't believe I never thought of it that way. We have a somewhat large amount of homeless people in Ahwatukee, and sometimes there are people staked out at pretty much every corner of the freeway on/off ramp. I see a lot of downtrodden people at the bus stop nearest there too. Just thinking about it, I realize how much I've been blocking it out and normalizing it all this time. It really is a sign that the city or some other agency needs to step in more.


The city just put up signs saying something to the effect of “Be aware of aggressive panhandling”They’re small and I only recently noticed them because they look like they’d be for bus route info. So the city is obviously aware the numbers have increased. I’ve approached some of the females with bags filled with hygiene kits and socks, etc and the biggest takeaway I have is that mental health is the issue, not housing but we know that already. It’s sad.


Just noticed signs on Tatum near the 101. They say something like “It’s ok to say no to panhandling.”


Also: portland/washington panhandlers are coming down … Its getting into the 50’s at night there, and the “early birds” are coming down for winter. Snow birds arent just retirees.


I live near Minneapolis and when I see homeless people in the city I wonder how the heck they make it through winter…


Hotels , prostitutes attract men, truckers and the comes drugs and Wallah it's the answer to the equation. Freeway and hotels


Yep. So let’s all agree to stop giving them money. Please and thank you.


I-17 homeless population seems to have grown exponentially in the past 5 years. They're moving further away from the core of the City as they are chased out by PD and business owners. Even the Neighbors app has gone from "was that a gun shot?" to "Did you see the homeless people?". We're going to have to build more shelters and offer more services to get people off the streets and into affordable housing. I have ideas about turning certain empty big-box stores into micro apartments for low income folks, but I'm about $10mil short on turning it into a reality.


More affordable housing is key, especially involving more communities allowing multi-unit housing to be built.


And better public health systems, especially for mental illness.




California tried that with public funds. Success rates was not that great they need more than housing. Jobs,mental health care , assistants living most of them can not hold a job or integrated to society state of AZ is one of the worst when it comes to helping the homeless these fucking law maker all they care about is tax cut for the rich


Live in the same area, been here for a long time. Seems to be getting worse and worse. The other week I was getting off the 17 and thunderbird and it straight up looked like a scene out of shaun of the dead. People just zooked out standing there motionless


It's like that everywhere now. Lived in Phoenix half of my life. This year has been the weirdest homeless wise. Moved to AK, not as bad. (Obvious reasoning there). Moved to Washington. Jfc. Just as bad as Phoenix - just have the coast now. It was hot, sticky, covered with camps, lots of people swarming around, rednecks like I've never seen in a blue state before, and for some reason - everyone loves to trash the bathrooms. You ask to use the bathroom? You are automatically trash like everyone has to live near there house. It's the weirdest shit I've ever seen. Point and Case. Phoenix is only seeing the beginning of this crap. I remember when the police HIGHLY enforced 0 urban camping. Left. Came back. My jaw dropped. It's insane.


Thank you for the insight, this is something I've seriously been wondering about lately. I grew up on the east coast and have been in Phoenix with my partner for the last 6 years. We're still unfortunately renting and I'm starting to get the wanderlust for somewhere new. But where to settle down? I had a bad experience with the homeless here, random freak thing, I was attacked at knifepoint at a Circle K in broad daylight. I don't wanna just run in fear from the problem, but at the same time, I'd rather live somewhere where I don't have to carry a weapon and have self defense training just to put gas in my car by myself.


Ouch. I've been attacked at knife point in Phoenix. I completely understand, that is terrifying, TERRIFYING to go through. A lot of zombies here in WA, not a whole lot of "I'll attack you". They more so go for your vehicle here, than you. Not to say it can't happen. But in WA it's about your car, or they just stick to themselves. The outer areas (like clear out by Mt. Vernon in WA, don't have as much of a homeless issue). Therapy helps, you were almost assaulted at that comes with trauma, and if you need to move, I 100% suggest you do if you have the funds. The west side is chill and people stay out of Scottsdale. As someone pointed out on here, everything costs more over there, and cops are more likely to move the homeless out of Scottsdale. If you are going for the West side, try Surprise, or anything further than 91st Ave in Peoria (just my experience). Glendale is iffy, if you've been there 6 years I'm pretty sure you know where to stay away from by now, if you don't. I can always go into detail in another comment. Cave creek is also pretty chill. But, yeah. Unfortunately this is a growing state wide issue. 😕


There are complaints being filed against the city for creating unsafe conditions by not addressing the homeless problem and that was just over a month ago. I don't see the homeless issue getting any better. Lived here 33 years and am used to seeing homeless especially on Grand avenue near Thomas but have never seen it get to the level it's at now. Just making cubicles with tarp at intersections and along the road.


Drove by Dunlap and the i17 and was shocked to see all those tents.


Camelback 7th St. To camelback and 43rd is beyond [email protected]#$%&.


I was in a drive thru trying to order some tacos and some guy walked up and interrupted the speaker person to ask me for money lol


> trying to order some tacos Alright, your story checks out.




I was in a drive thru once off Dunlap and 19th ave and a homeless man was making gun signs at me and going “bang” loud as fuck , kinda scared me lol


Yeah that’d make me a little uncomfortable lol


Congress lines their own pockets with free PPP loans and doesnt care about mental heath solutions


I left Phoenix about three years ago and was floored when I came back


The way you solve this problem is by addressing the drug addiction that leads many of these people to being homeless. And when I say addressing I don't mean jail but instead treat it as like the disease that it is, they need professional medical help. Unfortunately most people are so far gone that it is very unlikely that they want help, even more unlikely that they could complete treatment. It sucks.


** Also mental illness - schizophrenia, etc


I’d start right here. Substance abuse and addiction is a symptom of much deeper issues. And it’s difficult to help people that don’t want it, unfortunately.


As someone temporarily in a homeless shelter, you are absolutely correct. A saw a few who’s hobby is collecting cigarette butts and rolling them in papers. They dedicated all their time to this. How can you help them?


Good luck getting on your feet again.


We are doing great now. Took a nice vacation last week even. Thank you. We love Phoenix!


The places that have been successful take a unconditional “housing first” approach with dedicated caseworkers to address other issues. We have to be willing to give people a clean and safe place to live that is not a temporary shelter. That is the first step before the other problems of drug abuse, mental health, and employment can be addressed. We can hire 400 more police to move people from place to place, but it doesn’t fix anything. For around the same cost we can house around 400 people and provide caseworker services.


yep the hiring of police is the textbook approach to "move along" chronic homelessness is not new, nor are the old "solutions"


And we have to be willing to let the people we are helping fuck up again and again and again. We are far too strict with how we treat addicts seeking help who relapse. As a recovered for 15 years addict myself, if I wasn’t allowed all of my fuck ups by the folks who helped me, I would be dead, 100%.


It’s not only drug addicts that are homeless nowadays. Yes that’s certainly prevalent but it’s not the only cause. They also need to stop allowing 44% of all homes in the Phoenix area to be bought by investors and stop giving out permits for more luxury condos/apartments that nobody can afford without roommates.


Housing is absolutely bananas now. I got turned down for a two bedroom apartment last year due to lack of income. I made 60k last year… And the “demand” that people like Dave Ramsay keep going on about completely ignores that 44% figure and investment properties altogether. And this is Arizona, so absolutely nothing will ever be done about it. The ACC May as well be run by Tony Soprano.


I make 70k a year and my studio still takes almost 40% of my income.


So a $2300/mo studio apartment? 🤔


$2300/mo for a studio isn't *unheard of* but it's usually in NYC or Silicon Valley, not Phoenix. There's definitely cheaper options available here.


I live in Ahwatukee in the cheapest apartments in the area and pay about $1350, when all the extra fees, water have been added. My salary is 70k, but that isn’t what I actually get to take home. Nobody gets to take home their full paycheck.


How many square feet and location by zip code?


OP is probably including billing related to housing


That is sad. I can't move because my income I don't qualify. I have excellent rental and credit. So I stay where I am meanwhile rent go up another 200.00. My 2 bedroom was 975.00 in 2015 now 1800.00. We need rent control. So now housing and rental crash is here. Investors bought up all homes now they sit empty. Investors have to lower rent now.


It’s so bad. We need it now. My rent just went up another 200 too for an ok place. So me and my sister at 42 are moving in together. I see some people living 3 people in a one bedroom to afford it. Forget about buying even with 100k price cut everything still sky high. What happened to affordability. Why is everything just rising in Phoenix and salaries don’t support cost. Mean this is not SF, LA or NYC it’s Phoenix. Lol…..


There will be more vacant properties of all sorts in the coming years … the truth will suddenly hit you..the next population count will be rigged.


They’ll never stop as long as the ones at the top are profiting.


Or the ones at the bottom keep paying. I'm in a small $1800/mo 1 bed apartment for another 5 months. If they don't keep building, the rent cost will never fall. We need way more supply in Phoenix metro


I told my spouse I am not coming to Phoenix unless we stay metro or close, sadly this last "road to serfdom" housing saga forced us to buy in the "suburbs" metro is gonna continue to have extremely high demand.


Yep. Isn’t that the truth.


I'm in the zone feeding people at least once a week. Drugs are more of a result rather than a cause. If everything is fucking miserable and you just lost your job because you can't shower sleeping in your car, and then you lose your car because you can't pay for it with money from your job, and nobody will help you or even look at you like a person, what is there to stop you from doing drugs when the guy in the tent next to you seems to feel better after smoking.


Yep, and then the heavy criminalization of drugs creates a cycle that usually ends in death. The moment they get a drug charge on their record, it's not just their self esteem that shatters - it's also their job prospects. Someone in my family is currently struggling with this. Their dream career is over. Every time they start to get sober, they get depressed and relapse. Society makes it very difficult to move past these kind of mistakes.


yeah most people don't know that there are crimes of moral character... funny that George W Bush admitted to cocaine use and becomes president, but normal people cant make mistakes


I'm strongly in favor of decriminalization of drugs and prostitution for this reason. But it seems to be more profitable to keep them in prisons - considering the legality of slavery for prisoners.


Yes, I think you’re illustrating what I would call a relational issue. These drug problems aren’t created in a vacuum.


Especially when you start talking about money to address these issues. When you start suggesting to buy hotels to turn into apartments for homeless people so they don’t have to sleep on benches, governments like to simply remove the benches so now they have to sleep somewhere else. It doesn’t actually fix the problem it just ignores it, like saying your room is a mess so you just close the door instead of cleaning it. This city hates poor people.


Arizona got a 100 million dollar federal grant in 2020 to address the housing and homelessness issue. It expires in 2024 and the gov here has spent about 5 million of it. They built a large tent structure in the zone downtown. They have the money, they just don't fucking care.




Fuck, I'll have to see if I can find the video. I saw a report from some local news station that talked about it. They were focusing on the encampment at the park on 32nd Street and Thomas I think


not sure about this case, but sometimes federal grant money is you can spend, and sometimes it is you must spend, either way there are ALWAYS rules on how you can spend. politicians will often let money go unspent for principles


"If I can't figure out how to pocket some of this money, I won't spend it".


I live in Tempe, and they have bought at least one hotel to do this already.


100% this. And the drugs are _different_. With the fentynyl cocktails coming out, there may not be any coming back for a lot of these folks.


It’s not your dad’s opioid. When people are fondly tempering the days when it was ‘just’ heroin or cocaine, it says a lot.


Yes. And a lot of long term users develop mental issues, so it’s a double edged sword. You clean them up just to find out that now they have motor function problems. My wife’s long-time friend now suffers from schizophrenia as a result of 10 years of Nubians use age and smoking crack.


Drug induced psychosis is often times permanent brain damage. Just like a bad head injury. Very unfortunate but true.


It’s time to keep people from falling into addiction. It needs a response at all levels of government. For some, the odds of survival may be so low, that they practically need hospice care. However, other may pull through. We need a ranged set of responses. Also, for the homeless that aren’t addicts, get them Section 8 vouchers asap.


I moved out of that area 15 years ago and it was bad then. Not bad as now but it was bad for the time.


Im close to your area, and the issue here is Fentanyl... so the homeless in the area arent just regular homeless people, theyre homeless drug addicts. In the complex I live in, there are near constant break-ins into cars and units, the leasing office was recently broken into. They smoke pills on foil in broad daylight, nod out on the lawn, the police are constantly called and they rarely even come out. Its a huge epidemic in Phoenix right now. I highly recommend getting security lights, camera, security door, and system...they are relentless.


Also a large dog with a strong bark is an excellent deterrent.


Another major issue… overcrowded shelters. So many dogs need homes. MCACC is putting dogs down just for space. Two birds one stone.


This is real


I grew up sheltered I guess and thought most homeless people were people down on their luck and then I moved to Phoenix. As someone who travels around the city for work and does deliveries. Most homeless I see have mental issues or massive drug problems or a combination of the two. It's sad but honestly I've become jaded. I don't really know how much you can realistically help these people.


I’m sorry you purchased a home near the I-17 south of the 101.


Def have to do research


This was my first thought. Did they even do a drive by of their area?


They bought on Greenway, its really not that bad over there because there's no nearby anchor within walking distance. Bell and Thunderbird have the Quik Trip's which are prime gathering spots and a few people walk up and down 27th Avenue at night but for the most part, Greenway still hasn't been hit as badly as some other streets. From the 7-11 east of the freeway, there's basically nothing on Greenway until you hit 35th Ave.


Other than the medical plaza and NAU of course.


27th Ave is a new police project. Cameras and more coming soon


Cameras? Gross


You have to go several miles east of I-17 before you get to decent areas


I’m in the Sunnyslope area and the parks here are pretty much just homeless encampments. I really do feel for them. Phoenix has gotten viciously expensive since I first moved here nearly a decade ago. And the problem isn’t just Phoenix. Even up north homelessness and lack of affordable housing are bringing people to their knees.


I’m out here in surprise by the 303 & grand and there’s homeless people out here in the desert . They are everywhere now . Can’t escape them . Just hope they get help .


I'm off Bell and El Mirage and we have them here too


You have to bug your local representative like every single day and I'm not exaggerating. I wrote emails and sent them out on a schedule, about three every single day to anybody who would respond. I would tell them that I would gather my neighborhood and they would not be voting for them again if nothing would be done (of course I kept it polite and and was not rude at all). It took about 3 months to hear back and start seeing changes. We were starting to get homeless camps in empty fields near our home it was getting scary to even go to a convenience store. They fenced in all the empty fields so no one could set up camps. They've even gone as far as to fence in some businesses to keep the homeless and the drug population down and prevent them from constantly harassing customers for money. it seems to have helped dramatically. I just kept reminding them that we were voters and that seem to get their attention. I eventually got contacted and asked politely to stop my constant emails and stop contacting everyone since my local representative is doing something about it now lol but I just changed my trajectory, I'm going to try and get some speed bumps installed down our street, people speed like bandits down our road, wish me luck.


No one is really addressing overall issue in Phoenix on explosive cost to live. Sure some of folks have mental and drug issues but not all. I find it ridiculous that my nyc a few years back was cheaper than 1 bedroom in Phoenix. You can’t touch anything unless it’s 1600-1800 a month. I am sorry salaries for not support it. The city and state need to step in raising rent on someone by 800-1200 is not good and putting many people on the streets. People wake up!!! Growing homeless is due to no one can afford to live even on avg Phoenix salary so they give up.


My boyfriend and I moved here so he could get a much better job. I quickly found a good job too. Our car broke down and we ran out of money and ended up in the homeless shelters. A good 95% of people in there are severely mentally ill.They don’t want to get jobs and get out of there. The buy fentanyl pills for $3 and smoke it all day. It’s easy to pan handle $3 and the city feeds their habit but giving them cash. We were in the shelter for 5 weeks. At this point we had saved up almost $6000. Since we don’t drink or do drugs it was easy. The shelter gave us bus passes, 3 meals a day and helped us. They gave us a rental move in assistance check of $1700. There is help for the homeless. They have programs if you attend they give you gift cards for $25 at Walmart. We got so much help! I slept in a woman’s area. I got sexually hit on frequently by drug addicted crazy zombies. I don’t know what the answer to the problem is. The women I was forced to sleep near need straight up institutionalized care. They cannot function in society and are only in pursuit of theft and getting high.


Wow I’m glad you got the help you needed. It’s good to know that exists. It sounds like a lot of the people there need a different kind of help. How sad :(


It really makes me appreciate my car and apartment. I’ve never worked harder in my life for something. In that environment it was very uncomfortable.


Thank you for sharing


I read something like homeless shelters do work, and works wonders. It's the 10% that doesn't want help that gives those shelters a bad name, and they are all over the news. Then everyone ignores the 90% like yours which is what the shelters are actually built for - a temporary hand for people who had unexpected things happen to them so they can get back to being a productive member of the society again.


Sadly I’m the 6 weeks I was there I only met 2 other woman who were working and saving money. My point is that seriously most of them are too severely mentally ill and drug addicted to get and keep jobs.


damn, that sucks so bad that a small thing like a car repair can land someone in a shelter :( i wish things werent that way but im glad you got out okay


Not repair. The engine blew. And we didn’t have enough savings to afford a hotel for long enough to save up for a used car and apartment. That 6 weeks of not paying for rent or food let us save every penny.


Unfortunately the mental health help in this country is severely lacking




You two really need to chronicle this and shop it to news agencies. That was eye opening and I’m really really keen to hear more about this. It’s a part of society that is not talked about.


We are both embarrassed. Only 2 of my friends even know. We didn’t want to borrow money and get stuck in an endless cycle of being behind.


There is help for the homeless, but not the mentally ill. Those drug addicted homeless people still deserve recovery, love, and a place to sleep. A lack of love growing up is usually what leads to drug abuse. We're all just people. A lot of people write off addicts as undeserving but its like .... yeah, they're going to choose the drug that they will get violently ill without over the long and harrowing path of recovery and withdrawals, just to struggle financially in a shitty apartment and work an underpaying job. Then to deal with the crushing weight of everything they suffered as a homeless addict with no support, surrounded by the same type of people who demonized them while they were down on their luck. Im not saying you in particular were disparaging them, but I wish people understood addicts' pov and didn't consider them not sobering up as them wanting to be homeless or them not wanting to get better. There is such little support for people who can't just "get over it".


Ya that’s just it. Many of them get kicked out for fighting, stealing and worse. I put my stuff in storage and brought old brought work clothes. My underwear were stolen twice. Anything I left out disappeared. No way to get into the bathroom at night because women smoke pills and meth in the bathroom. If you want to help so bad and show love please go to CASS they need volunteers very badly.


Thank you for sharing your story, this was really insightful to read. I'm so glad you're doing better now. I did an IOP program for a few months to help me kick alcohol, and I feel like I met a few of the kinds of people you mention here. It's really upsetting, because exactly, I don't know how to help them. They don't want help.


I hope you are doing much better now


Yes thanks. Because of the help we received we have a beautiful place to live.


What shelter was that?


Halle Woman’s Shelter UMOM. He stayed at CASS and we took advantage of all services offered.


I know that I could merely upvote other commenters (and I did so) but I wanted to say it again, thank you for sharing this because it was very moving.


I can't speak to other neighborhoods, but there's a few reasons Scottsdale has less homeless people (they are still common around the freeways). 1) If you're east of the freeway you really do need a car. It's mostly houses and private property with long distances in between places they could realistically hang out. 2) Rich people are more likely to call the police on homeless people and the police are more likely to respond. I've heard rumors they literally pick them up and take them to Phoenix also 3) Things are more expensive over there, including the drugs.


Also, people are less likely to give money to panhandlers in nice areas which reduces the incentives for them to congregate. Scottsdale, Biltmore, and now Chandler have even put up signs encouraging people to not give to panhandlers too, some mention giving to shelters instead.


This is huge! It’s an unfortunate thing but when you feed the addiction by giving homeless panhandling on the street a lot of the times you feed the addiction. I always feel bad and want to help but at the same time I know that I’m helping fuel and addiction and lining pockets of the people selling the drugs. Much much better to give to a shelter or charity that helps with mental health.


You either have to live far enough away from Metro Phoenix or be rich enough to avoid the majority of the vast drug and homeless issue this city has.


I am not discounting the drug issue everyone is referencing but I'll see your homeless drug problem and raise you the corporate housing buyouts (Zillow, etc) and Airbnb/VRBO market inflating house prices and rent by proxy. Suddenly, Phoenix went from a very affordable city to a much more expensive place to live.


This is true. We have the worst inflation in the country right now:/


That would make more sense if most cities of even moderate size in America weren’t seeing the exact same issue, but they are.


And they are also seeing increased homeless populations. It's end game capitalism driving people to the streets.


Sorry, that's what I meant. There's absolutely nothing unique about Phoenix's homeless issue, so I don't think blaming land values really makes much sense; places with *much* lower land values are seeing the same issue.


I do think that Phoenix was a place that was relatively inexpensive to live for decades and lower income individuals could make it here. If you had a few roommates you could survive on a few bucks because rent was cheap. I remember paying $650 rent about 20 years ago when I was at ASU but I imagine that those places are probably a grand more now. Phoenix was a low cost destination and individuals, families, and most notably, investors bought up houses here at a record setting pace recently driving home costs out of reach for many. I know I saw my home price more than double over the past 2-3 years. While not great in the summer, migrating to a warmer climate in the winter makes sense if you were already homeless too. I do think we are a little unique for those reasons.


Ten years ago you could still get a two bed apt in mesa for 750. Now that same apt is 1900. I checked. So yeah its a huge increase.


In 2014 I had a 2 bedroom apartment for $650 off mckellips and stapley. The apartment sucked and the AC kept breaking and we'd occasionally have roaches. I got no sleep in the summer time because the ac couldn't even keep me cool. Now they've changed their name to level 550 (found out there was a shooting there last month) and are charging 1200 - 1600


Yeah, incomes have not gone up a grand for similar jobs in a decade. Those people still need to be in the workforce but can no longer afford to live on that pay. They lose their housing and end up on the streets.


In 2014 I made 42,000. The job I just got laid off from paid 70,000. My new job pays 60,000. That's including having licenses I did not have in 2014. Yeah these prices are stupid. When I bought my first home in (2017?), I kept second guessing the decision. Now I'm so glad I did it.


It’s wild to tell people I rented a spot downtown off Roosevelt for $400 in 2009. But it wasn’t a go to destination at that time. I’m envious of my friends who bought cheap places right after graduation


Welcome to the new normal. I’ve been dealing with a homeless camp in the alley behind my house for almost three months. Phoenix police do nothing. I reported it to their Phoenix CARES department, whose sole purpose is to reduce homelessness, and they did nothing. Finally I approached one of the homeless men one morning and nicely told him that he needed to leave. It seems to have worked, but now I have to pay $300-500 to clean up all of the trash they left behind. Phoenix is doing nothing to remedy this situation. It’s sad.


Wow, I'm sorry to hear this. Our friends close by have an alley behind their home and deal with issues like this as well. Someone even pooped behind their gate 🤦‍♀️


there's more shelters for homeless in the downtown area, so homeless tend to congregate there. as far as i know, there arent any shelters in some of the wealthier suburbs. also, the amount of people nodding off at bus stations and outside grocery stores even in my cushy west-side suburb is rising more and more all the time. earlier this week i was in downtown glendale and was kinda shocked by the amount of homeless just drugged out stumbling around and crashed in alleys.


The homeless population are very young in that area. Most likely because of meth addiction.


My thoughts are that the tax base of Arizona isn't ready to engage on the homeless issue. Until they are, we will keep ignoring them or incarcerating the really bad cases at a massive hidden expense to the taxpayers. The reality is that people are going to fall on hard times. Many homeless have issues with severe mental illness, substance use, general types of abuse, and other chronic health issues. Where we're at right now as a society is basically ignoring these things. Until we're ready to all get on board and address them together, even in small incriments, it will just keep going as is. A byproduct of our massive cities.


Some communities are much more intolerant and enforce vagrancy type laws more strictly and assuredly, plus they may have overall police resources to prioritize lower priority calls. Many places it has been the same story, they will move along homeless people, other places are kinda the destination of last resort. Welcome to Phoenix :)


I think it has something to do with section 8 housing being turned into “luxury apartments”. Back when I lived at 32nd street n Thomas, it was section 8 apartments and housing everywhere now they build million dollar houses n condos down the road from where my tires got slashed at Walmart. Now it’s not even the hood as bad as it was. Which making the area a bit safer at night isn’t horrible however it’s making homeless ppl go elsewhere. Even in Scottsdale near the 101 I’ve seen them panhandling but not often. But in my opinion I wouldn’t live anywhere near the 17, got drinks thrown at my car just checking out pima medical institute


The reason why people are “contained in the area” by the authorities is explained here briefly by [Michael Shellenberger](https://youtu.be/TsTDA2DT72k) . Of course he is talking about LA but the reasonings are pretty much similar now in Phoenix as well. You can watch the entire one somewhere else but in a nutshell, police department doesn’t have enough resources to go after homeless people, because Even if they patrol and find out about drugs and what have you, you have to “deal” with that person and it is “pain” for the state. People had to be treated case by case and you simply don’t have enough case managers, enough housing and enough other resources to sustain that recovery for those folks. So state tries their best to contain them in particular areas now and not “touching”them. There is 30% increase in demand for free lunch programs for homeless. 70% for showering and these numbers keep getting larger. On top of that, the politics as well. Unfortunately, Arizona has a major problem with emergency fundings so any extra effort is almost impossible since you don’t have the resources to begin with. As the elections approaching, none of the people in power can a take risk to deal with them at all. It’s not an easy task to tackle so they just ignore it as of today. My 2c is that The whole approach to homeless problem is far from solving the problem since it’s never about root causes so it may only get worse.


He seems to be the expert on the issue, I posted a longer interview of him below


The I-17 corridor, south of Bell and usually east of the 17 has become a huge catch basin of homeless, spreading up from Peoria ave and the like. COVID made it worse, but the problem is multi faceted. Inflation, rent increases 300% over 5 years, and opioid epidemic are the main culprits. But truth be told there is no silver bullet. Some people choose to live the transient lifestyle and live one high to the next. Simply building housing, or decriminalizing drugs/petty crime won't help either. You need a complete system of housing, treatment and rehabilitation and or incarceration for ACTUAL criminals among the transient population. It's sad, but honestly among west coast cities, metro PHX is much less impacted. Overall you need a much more robust and better funded outreach program, and more local police to enforce trespassing private businesses. My $.02. Anyways, welcome to the neighborhood. I live north of Bell, just east of 35th ave.


Don't forget an oversight committee for the myriad of not-for-profit org. addressing the homelessness issue that don't actually do anything. it's a racket.


This is also correct. What we need is funding going to humans who are actually passionate about the issues at hand, an an oversight committee to ring the alarm whenever the funding is being misappropriated. Which will never. Ever. ever. Happen.


Tweakers are fucking assholes who lie, rob and steal from everyone. They're always asking for money so they can do more drugs and they dirty everything up and make it dangerous for people in the local area. They ruin local business and they blame everyone but themselves for their position in life. I get addiction is hard but you can't go around destroying everyone else's property because you're mad that they're not addicted and on the streets. We need better rehab/drug programs and housing help for these people. At least get them off the streets but I'm gonna be honest. I grew up in a tweaker apartment complex, I never wanna deal with that shit again. I don't want to live next to tweakers.


I can tell you right now that if you give a tweaker a house, that house is going to end up looking like an episode of Hoarders. There needs to be mandatory drug treatment or else nothing is going to change. These people don't want anything but their next fix. If they won't help themselves, they need professionals to step in. Otherwise, you're going to see the same people walking those streets everyday. As for the sober homeless people, they need general help getting into shelters then housing. There doesn't seem to be enough shelters right now. They need clean shelters with lots of security. Food banks need as many donations as they can get. Give a homeless person food and water, not money. Or just buy a starter pack of basic necessities. But yeah, the homeless issue is only going to get worse, so the politicians better start helping before there's tents plopped up in front of their houses.


work for their next fix, in a city where it’s accepted - it’s hard to solve this problem that’s for sure


Phoenix has a big push to help. There are several mobile assistance groups. Where you are is a tough place to live due to proximity to fwy.


I moved here in 2016 having never been here before, bought a house near I17 and cactus cause it was close to my office I was transferring to. Had a similar realization the first few weeks. I never had any issues during the 3 years in that house although the neighborhood has a lot of that.


I am not far from OP at 19th Ave & Bell, it isn't any better and has gotten worse since covid.


Inflation and overpopulation from California exodus might leave me homeless. These are critical problems that need to be addressed now in hopes it won’t be too late down the road.


Welcome to the neighborhood. It’ll get really interesting for you when you figure out the police don’t come out if/when you call them.


I’ve always had an opinion of wherever there’s a bus stop, you’ll find homeless. Also being near the older parts of town or a freeway is a huge one.


Lived in Ahwatukee Foothills for years. Never saw a major homeless/ drug/ panhandling situation as I have once moving to North Phoenix recently. It’s really bad here, hate stopping at any Circle K. Like a zombie land. Of course this homeless situation can be solved. But it’s more jobs and money in keeping it going. Just my 2 cents..


To be fair the edges of Scottsdale absolutely has a panhandler and homeless issue. Just go down 52nd steeet.


Scottsdale is the only city that does something about the homeless issue


I work in social services, I also live near the freeway and very close to a mall so I definitely experience the homeless population. It’s so complicated, but as with many cities the resources just aren’t there. As we all have seen, the opioid crisis is a major factor. Arizona also has one of the highest inflation rates in the country. Half of my caseload are homeless or about to become homeless and many of these are people with jobs and families. The rent in this city is absolutely unsustainable. Food banks are seeing record numbers of families in need. Subsidized housing waitlists are all closed. There is nothing there. There needs to be more money for shelters and housing. There needs to be more resources for mental health. Substance abuse needs to be considered a mental health issue and not a criminal one. The reason you don’t see the problem in cities like Scottsdale and PV is because whenever attempts are made for more behavioral health hospitals, group homes, sober living homes or shelters they scream about not wanting it in their backyard. Same with Gilbert. Everybody loves to talk about how this population needs help but nobody wants to have to see it. It’s so complicated and it’s very frustrating.


The fentanyl pills have completely taken over many people, and are so cheap that a few minutes panhandling will get someone their fix. Stop paying them, folks.


Get out of the area. It will only get worse


I-17 is what I refer to as the "Meth Corridor". Though, it has expanded into the opiates and fentanyl corridor. Since as far back as 1995, we used to say that if your car was stolen you'd likely find it in the apartments east of I-17 and Cactus. This wasn't merely a joke... It's based on reality. Bunch of low income apartments and flop houses up and down the I-17.


I wouldn't expect anything to be done. It's as simple as the state does not see solving homelessness as value-add. I worked for years downtown and watched them corral the homeless and struggling, then proceed to daily drive through cops have sirens wailing at 6am to disperse during the day so "business' could operate". So the homeless go where they can get something. State and cities won't help so they go to wealthy areas. This is a mentality you should get used to moving forward living in a phoenix- if it's not for profit it's not for AZ.


My opinion on this is the richer people can afford mental health services and lower income cannot. While rent and COVID don’t help, they just exacerbate the bigger problem.


As someone who works in supportive housing, I can say that it’s a systemic issue. Of course, that’s the reactivity needed to address the tip of the iceberg and not the root cause, but it’s challenging to address every factor that results in someone experiencing homelessness. We need more preventative efforts and a system overhaul. Sure there are services available, but you have to qualify for them and there are long waits to tap into resources because so many people need them. We cannot keep up despite opening more properties. There is a need for mental health services and parenting/family services that lead to breaking cycles and increasing protective factors that prevent the life crises that often lead to homelessness. We need more housing opportunities and then treatment to get people back on their feet. It’s a process that includes healing people and offering permanent supports and that’s tough to find. As to what you can do, advocate for social programming and mental health services. Vote for people who want to address the issue by providing more preventative services and better access to healthcare. You could join a coalition if you want to learn more. You could donate to organizations who offer housing services. I seldom give money to folks even though I work with this population because I don’t want to feed into substance use. I carry food, water and socks in my car to hand out. That’s very helpful. Kindness goes a long way in instilling hope for people who feel invisible and have little support. It may be that very kindness that motivates them to get help. Sorry I wasn’t super helpful. It’s tough to watch people going through that and it can be scary for those around them. They are often not dangerous, but I understand the increased risks that come with mental illness, substance use and the sheer need to survive.


Up and down the 17 is pretty bad. Beggars on every exit corner.


Not to belittle our problem- it is big but there is a nation wide problems that needs to be dealt with on a state and nationwide level- have you ever been to Portland Oregon?? Our country is so focused on the haves and not the humans that are in need. Wehave been spiraling for a decades. Anyone with suggestions on how to help and get it thought the thick head of our politicians (mental health, addition services, step-up programs instead of just handouts) would be greatly appreciated. I would hate to be homeless in this crazy place/weather😐 Sorry for the bit of a rant.


Welcome to Arizona where they can raise your rent however high they want and do not care about people becoming homeless. Also the nicer areas you mentioned are the rich neighborhoods. They have money. You'll rarely see a homeless person if you live in an area that has money.


Homeless population will continue to grow as we do....we're literally living in the fastest growing city for roughly 15 years in a row... I have no answer for this issue, clearly no one else does either...it's really unfortunate but it's part of life we need to deal with..


Weather has made AZ an ideal spot for homeless since I was born 💯 and present conditions in our country has only magnified that issue and now all these out of staters are moving in and doing a lot of complaining when there the ones paying ridiculous prices for houses and rent causing housing to double and triple for some🤷


Scottsdale and places like it have their police for es literally detain and relocate unhoused people to downtown and other areas. A number of those people are in the place they are in and physically at the location they are at because they made a poor choice at some point and the state decided that meant they didn't matter anymore. Arizona was given a hundred million dollar federal grant in 2020 to assist with the housing and homelessness problem. It expires in 2024 and the state has utilized a total of 5 million dollars of it. Whether you want to here it or not, they lived on that block before you did, and they don't have much other choice about it.


Scottsdale doesn't see the homeless population because those from Scottsdale who fall on hard times can sell their house and move to a more affordable area in a less affluent location. Those who fall on hard times in less affluent areas don't have that luxury and end up living in a car and when the car breaks down they end up on the street. There's literally a thousand people living in tents lining the streets in downtown Phoenix next to a homeless shelter with a population of 700. Nearly 2000 people total in less than a city block. This is a problem that will only get worse.


That and because Scottsdale PD picks them up and drops them in Phoenix. Or because public transportation is limited.


That's part of it but also homeless shelters and related services tend to be located in lower income neighborhoods due to NIMBY's in more affluent areas.


Not really true. It's much much less in Scottsdale but there are still a significant number of homeless folks there. Mostly around old Town and South Scottsdale since it's nearer more stuff. I work with a lot of these folks on the reg so I see it every day


Housing should be a human right along with free medical treatment for mental illness and drug abuse.


The housing crisis is one of the highest contributing factors


This is absolutely the answer. Scrolled a long time waiting to find this one. Was a homeless shelter case manager amongst other director roles here for 7 years... Housing is healthcare. Affordable housing is 100% the solution for anyone who works in this field with homeless or shelter programs. Not more shelters, not better services, housing first. I've seen more things on the streets doing outreach at 9pm at night unarmed and just with bottles of water and resource lists. Substance use and mental health or other issues cannot be solved without some sense of permanency addressing Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs. Housing first models work. Lived it for years. More affordable housing = less homelessness. It really is as simple as that. The hard part is the programs after that undoing all the BS our systems cause these people. Housing first !


I live just north of you, and I can say that it's definitely a lot worse now than it was before covid. Prepare for it to be even worse in the winter, due to our nice weather. I swear they migrate.


Most people don't understand that a place like Phoenix is an absolute haven for the homeless. We have no safety nets or care to offer, so the only thing the Police can do is arrest them, which does absolutely nothing. Cities like New York have a budget for homeless shelters as part of their "Right to Shelter" policy. This is so they can legally classify living on the street as a crime. The cops get to arrest them, then they get sent to DSS to get located into whatever shelter has a free bed. This system works because they end up bouncing from shelter to shelter instead of spending a night in jail and then back in the street. You may see a rare hobo passed out on the subway from time to time, but they're not panhandling and taking over bus stops. The problem is that Arizona doesn't even want to spend money on their own Children's education, they definitely don't want to spend it on addicts.


Seems shocking no one is mentioning skyrocketing rent