D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser takes steps toward ending homelessness

D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser takes steps toward ending homelessness. (ABC7 photo)

More than a thousand people packed Foundry United Methodist Church on Saturday morning.

"People are anxious," D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser said in front of a standing room only crowd at the church.

The group gathered to push for the next steps in achieving affordable housing efforts.

It's an issue Samuel Ross knows well.

"For me, homelessness was on and off for 25 years," he said.

He came out to hear Mayor Bowser's plans and says he's seeing progress.

"It's not something that's going to happen overnight, because it didn't happen overnight for people to become homeless," Ross said.

The 'Fulfill the Promise' rally is a joint effort by The Way Home campaign and The Housing For All Campaign.

"We're here to make sure that the Mayor invests the resources that are needed in things like permanent and supportive housing for people experiencing chronic homelessness," said Lara Pukatch, Assistant Director of Advocacy with Miriam's Kitchen.

"We've already committed $100 million to affordable housing each and every year. We were able to accomplish it in our budget last year and we'll do it again this year," Mayor Bowser said.

Organizers call the efforts more than promising.

"Our city leaders have prioritized affordable housing and ending homelessness and they are matching that prioritization with budget investments," said Steve Glaude, with the Coalition for Nonprofit Housing and Economic Development.

The group says Saturday's meeting was another step in the right direction.

"Let's keep putting our foot to the grind and keep working at it, getting everybody off the street," Ross said.

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