Letter to the editor: New tool to help vulnerable is vital

I was so excited to read about the “Homelessness Tool” being used by CVOEO, as described by Jan Demers, their Executive Director. VI-SPDAT — Vulnerability Index-Service Prioritization Decision Assistance Tool — allows local organizations to prioritize those who are in the most danger from being homeless, and place them at the top of the list for needed services.
Demers noted that Chittenden County has been using this tool for four years, and it has had startlingly positive results (56 percent drop in chronic homelessness, 26 percent drop in family homelessness; 42 percent drop in homelessness among those with mental illnesses; and a 70 percent drop in homelessness among those affected by chronic substance use disorder).
Addison County has the social service network, and the community commitment, to end homelessness here, if we decide to make it a priority. Thanks to CVOEO and all others who are working hard on this important project.
Emily Joselson

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