Who we are
  • Private citizens interested in creating solutions that support the health, safety, rights and dignity of our housed and unhoused neighbors. We are all volunteers, some with full-time jobs, some retirees and some without housing.
  • In the short term, we support the use of a designated 'rest stop' or secure and sanctioned location for short-term use by homeless individuals. This should be managed by an existing nonprofit homeless service provider under an operational agreement and liability release with the property owner. The site would be managed primarily by residents with support from the nonprofit and community volunteers. See for an example of this solution.
  • Support open discussion of various public and private strategies to address conditions of homelessness and poverty. Encourage respectful conversations about these strategies among housed and unhoused citizens.
  • We acknowledge others may have different approaches to these challenges; while many are understandably frustrated and angry at the lack of adequate housing options, we intend to build, not argue.
  • Promote dialogue about the changing nature of housing and shelter needs in light of shrinking public resources and the shortage of housing stock that meets diverse needs and income levels.
  • Cultivate trust among local elected officials to help them view private citizens as allies in their efforts to use tax dollars efficiently while providing essential services and reducing conflict.
  • Research and develop locally appropriate design standards for ultra low-cost, secure, insulated personal shelters that provide personal safety and privacy, protection from the elements and predators, and essential amenities and aesthetics necessary for human dignity.
  • Where possible, seek common ground with public, private and nonprofit stakeholders, and work collaboratively and respectfully toward solutions that provide for common health and safety without excessive regulatory burden.
  • If supported by local partners and available resources, pursue a village or similar model to address the needs of:
    • economically displaced individuals for whom local housing is out of reach;
    • those waiting for a Section 8 or other tenant voucher, subsidized rental unit, or permanent supportive housing;
    • childless couples unable to remain together in congregate shelters;
    • persons with disabling conditions that require a reasonable accommodation.
Current limitations
  • We know that Opportunity Village and other similar models have required approximately one year from initial community acceptance to occupancy; that seems to be a realistic time frame;
  • We currently lack a protected space to build experimental structures and test designs. We need shop/build space with adequate power and storage space for materials, equipment and components;
  • Boise code limits options for creating simple structures for human occupancy without administrative approval and layers of permitting (we welcome a chance to explore opportunities for short-term use as an alternative to sleeping in tents or vehicles);
  • While we would like to see more people housed this winter, it is beyond our capacity to undertake large-scale construction (although existing groups with solid construction and framing skills could change that equation).

Group: Look to Eugene for Boise Homeless Fix

An Alternative to Boise's Tent City Plan B or C
Clarification: although the article mentions the BASC volunteer's employer (IHFA), the organization is neither a sponsor nor connected to BASC or the upcoming Andrew Heben presentation.

Boise Alternative Shelter Co-op group kicks off campaign to help homeless

Coronor identifies man killed on State Street
(The week prior to the accidental death of Burt Mack, BASC members were contacted by the Vertical Church in Boise requesting a shelter for Burt. We mourn Burt's passing and offer gratitude for those who reached out to provide hospitality, friendship and comfort.)

New group hoping to help homeless

U of I Students Work on Designs for Housing Homeless

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