The student news site of Coral Gables Senior High School


The student news site of Coral Gables Senior High School


The student news site of Coral Gables Senior High School


Gov. DeSantis Announces Measures to Combat Homelessness

Joseph Abrahantes
RonDesantis makes a speech to Floridians addressing the new homelessness bill. While some people support this act, others do not.

With a homeless population exceeding 30,000, it has become a common occurrence to see men and women seeking shelter in public spaces such as parks and businesses. Though these locations offer them a sense of safety, local tax payers have begun to complain about this unsanitary, unpleasant living arrangement. In an attempt to remedy this situation, on March 20, 2024, Gov. Ron DeSantis passed a bill to ban the homeless. Although this may seem to be a step in the right direction, what will this new law really accomplish? 

The problem of homelessness has begun to take the forefront in Florida. From 2022 to 2023 the number of unsheltered men and women, partly driven by the expiration of pandemic-related funding, rising housing costs and immigration. This caused multitudes of the homeless to reside on streets and in public areas, which was not received well by long-time residents. In an effort to rectify this problem, the DeSantis bill promises to provide enough resources to get homeless people back on their feet. 

“There are many more fundamental problems that also need to be addressed for this bill to be successful. Ron DeSantis is trying to fix a problem with one bill, when in reality it is going to take much more than that. Homeless is not an issue you can fix in a day, and I definitely believe that he should have taken the time to actually make a long-term solution for Florida,” sophomore Avril Donner said.

Under this new law, camping in public spaces with tents, temporary shelters or bedding will no longer be legal. Instead, the homeless will be placed in provisional housing monitored by law enforcement agencies. These designated campsites will be required to provide restrooms, running water, mental health treatment and resources for previous substance abusers. People living in these shelters will be prohibited from using drugs and alcohol, as they will constantly be monitored.

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Though these sites are expected to create a positive change in the lives of countless homeless people, they will unfortunately only be a temporary fix rather than a long term-solution. According to the bill, after one year these safe spaces will be removed. It is evident that DeSantis is trying to eliminate homelessness across Florida, but his plan contains many flaws. 

“Even though this plan could briefly create positive change in the lives of homeless people, where should they go after one year is up? If they are not allowed to reside on the streets, they have no place else to go. They have no home or family,” sophomore Lucia Astorga said.

Another major question that remains unanswered is where these campsites are to be located. No residents want them in their neighborhood, so officials are still searching for the perfect locations. Wherever these shelters are eventually established, they are certain to upset some locals who will undoubtedly fear the presence of homeless men and women wandering the streets of their city. 

Considering all of these issues, it is obvious that these campsites will merely be a short-term solution to a vast problem. After one year, the homeless will be back out on the street under the blazing hot sun, once again going nowhere. How will they ever find work? With no education or training, it will be impossible for them to compete with other job applicants. Despite the so-called benefits of the homeless shelters, they will not actually prepare individuals to become a part of the working-class. When the homeless men and women eventually leave the campsite, they will once again find themselves in the exact same position as when they entered it, only one year older.

“This bill is unfair to the homeless people of Florida. They’re expected to recover within only one year, which is probably not possible for the majority of them. They are dealing with severe addiction and mental health issues. It is important that they receive treatment until they are able to support themselves again,” sophomore Cooper Piedra said.

Concerns have also been raised about whether the law will result in the arrest of homeless individuals or expose localities to lawsuits. Since all cities and counties throughout Florida will be required to follow this new regulation, areas with inadequate funding will find it especially difficult to operate the new facilities. In this case, law enforcement may be forced to place homeless people in jail cells rather than in recovery campsites.

To prevent these unnecessary arrests, citizens would be subjected to pay higher taxes. Are Florida residents really willing to pay more to fund the expansion of shelters, though? To support these facilities and to have a positive impact on the lives of these poor indigents, it is crucial to provide the homeless with the correct resources needed to change their lives for the better. 

“Homeless people deserve to have access to what they need in order to get back on their feet. Permanent shelters and treatment centers would be ideal since they would provide the homeless with the time they need to find a home and a career. Hopefully DeSantis will implement changes to his bill to make it more of a long-term solution rather than simply a quick fix,” sophomore Andres Espinosa said.

The Florida legislature led by Gov. DeSantis has recently passed a law intended to rid the state of the scourge of homelessness. While the legislature may have had good intentions, this law lacks the specificity needed to reach its ultimate goal. When these shelters are finally implemented, they will serve as nothing but a temporary fix. Florida citizens may feel safer knowing that the homeless are not wandering their streets, but this is far from a solution to the problem. While this law may be a good start to ending the pandemic of homelessness, it will not make a significant impact on the state. 


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About the Contributors
Kate Kuryla
Kate Kuryla, CavsConnect Staff Writer
Kate Kuryla is a sophomore in the International Baccalaureate program who is excited to return to Cavsconnect for her second year as a staff writer. Aiming to improve since her previous year as a freshman, Kuryla is entering sophomore year with a new mindset. This past summer she was rarely home, as she was traveling to Scandinavia, Turkey and Italy. She definitely came back from her trip part Italian. She loves to try all kinds of food and listen to all types of music, but her favorite artist has to be Lana Del Rey. She hopes that maybe one day Del Rey will come to Miami on tour. When Kate is not doing schoolwork or with her friends and family, you can find her curled up in bed sleeping. She dreams of moving to New York City one day and have a cat to keep her company. Kate does not know what she will major in yet, but she believes it will be either in the medical field or law studies. She’s very indecisive. Hopefully sophomore year will guide her on the right path to success.

Joseph Abrahantes
Joseph Abrahantes, CavsConnect Business Manager
Joseph Abrahantes, a sophomore in the International Baccalaureate program and second year member of CavsConnect, is excited to come back as the publication's Business Manager. Hoping to work in STEM in the future, Joseph plans to get more involved with the Science National Honor Society as well as Gables' Science, Engineering, Communication, Mathematics and Enrichment club to further his experience. Additionally, his love for biology has driven him to become a tutor with Gables’ Interact club. Joseph fuels his academic spirit with his 10 hour long playlist, ranging from Kendrick and Baby Keem to Doja Cat and SZA, whose songs he knows by heart.
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