To the Editor:
It is well known that many Island residents are functionally homeless. These folks do the “Vineyard shuffle” each spring. According to the Housing Production Plan produced two years ago, 62 percent of Island housing is dedicated to seasonal or vacation use. Clearly, there is an enormous shortage of year-round housing. This is one of the reasons that there is a drive to establish a Housing Bank.
The mechanics and procedures of the Housing Bank have been described in this paper and elsewhere in recent weeks. It is not a panacea, but nothing better has been suggested by opponents of the concept, or is on the horizon. At next month’s town meetings there will be articles pertaining to the establishment of the Housing Bank. For those who fall into the group of the essentially homeless, who are required to “couch-surf” every May or June, and there are clearly many of you, it would be in your best interest to be at the meetings and support the concept. This is your chance to have your voice heard, and perhaps help address the housing crisis.