Pay For Success Funded and Ready to Go

The Plain Dealer covered the program yesterday as it was funded by Cuyahoga County.  We featured a story about it a few months back.  For those keeping track at home, the program will pay $37,037 for each of the 135 families in order to keep their kids out of foster care.  They are actually paying a dollar figure for every day that the children do not spend in foster care.  This will constitute a savings for the county who have to pay for housing, staffing and oversight of the children when they go under the care of the Department of Children and Family Services.  These programs are being pushed by Wall Street and the White House.  Someone will be making money off of what should be a government service.  Investors get paid and families don't have the trauma of putting their children in the foster care system--win, win.

It is a shame that we cannot do more of this work with investors.  Think how much the County could save if we invested in families instead of shelter beds?  How much money in food, sheets, health care and tutoring of children would we save if we did not have families sleeping in shelters.  The cost of counseling after the trauma and uncertainty of being without a home is huge for society.  Homelessness as a result of a woman having fled an abuser is a horrible tragedy for our society, but it is also expensive to pick up a life after dissolving on the day the women decides to leave.  The problem is that so many different government agencies have to pay for the results of homelessness.  One government pays for shelter beds, another provides medical care mostly in the emergency room, one pays for food another pays for rental assistance. 

Brian Davis

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