In and Out at Homeless Services
April 19th, 2010
With the Bloomberg administration under attack for its plan to charge some families rent for living in homeless shelters, the city’s commissioner of homeless services, Robert Hess, is leaving his job.
By most accounts, Hess’ four years on the job could hardly be considered a success. He came from Philadelphia promising to “fulfill the mayor’s commitment to ending homelessness as we know it within five years.” Although street homelessness declined during his tenure, the latest Mayor’s Management Report found the number of families with children entering the shelter system increased by 34 percent from fiscal year 2008 to 2009. In Hess’ time at the agency, the number of people living in shelters grew by 5,000 and now stands at 36,000 people.
Mayor Michael Bloomberg has selected Seth Diamond, executive deputy commissioner at the Human Resources Administration, to try to make a dent in these numbers. Hess will take a job with the Doe Fund, a nonprofit that works with the homeless and one of the mayor’s favored charities.By Gail Robinson on April 19, 2010, 12:38 pm
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