Alan Armijo, director of constituent services for Albuquerque’s Mayor’s office, will discuss Albuquerque’s There’s a Better Way Program. The Program pays the city’s homless community $9 an hour, cash, to perform a variety of necessary functions in the city. Much of the work is basic cleanup or handy work.
Funding through a nonprofit allows the program to be liquid with its cash, even picking up panhandlers on-the-go and offering them payment immediately for their work. Those who work are offered shelter and a variety of services. City officials are now looking at the long-term impacts the program is making, such as permanent housing and/or job placements. Other cities, such as Tulsa, have launched or are showing interest in launching similar programs.