Podcast | King County outreach leaders talk solutions to homelessness

An approach informed by lived experience can help solve the worsening crisis, they say.

A monitor showing a host and four panelists

Crosscut reporter Josh Cohen moderates a Crosscut Festival panel on homelessness featuring Marc Dones, Karen Salinas and LaMont Green. (Genna Martin)

In January, the King County Homeless Authority issued a report stating that more than 40,000 people had experienced homelessness in the county in the past year. It was a much larger number than any previously reported, in part a result of using new methodology, but it was not necessarily surprising.

Now seven years after the city and the county declared a state of emergency to help address homelessness, the problem has become so widespread in the greater Seattle area that it is nearly impossible to ignore. It can also seem nearly impossible to address in a meaningful way. 


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For this episode of the Crosscut Talks podcast, we listen in on a conversation with three people who are nonetheless attempting to do just that: King County Regional Homeless Authority CEO Marc Dones, outreach provider Karen E. Salinas and the CEO of the Racial Equity Action Lab, Lamont Green.

In conversation with Crosscut city reporter Josh Cohen, these three outreach leaders discuss why the homeless population has grown so large, where leadership has gone wrong in the past and how an approach informed by the lived experience of those living in a state of homelessness could help them get things right. 

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About the Hosts

Mark Baumgarten

Mark Baumgarten

Mark Baumgarten is the managing editor at Crosscut and KCTS 9.