As winter comes around in New York, the city's police commissioner Bill Bratton said this week that police will be cracking down on homeless people trying to take shelter in the subway system.
“Subways are not homeless shelters, and the homeless will not be allowed to congregate in them,” Bratton told CBS News. “The city has more than adequate shelters in other facilities.” He said homeless people will be moved on from subway cars and platforms.
The city's official count of the homeless population outside of homeless shelters is between 3000 and 4000 the New York Post reports, but some advocates say the real number is somewhere between 6000 and 12,000 people. The city's count of homeless people in shelters is more than 57,000. That number reached a historic high last winter at 59,000, NPR reported, and though that number dropped over the summer the overall situation has not significantly improved, according to advocates.
New York City may be working with the state to come up with a new program to provide services and housing to homeless people in the city, according to the Wall Street Journal, which would aim to provide more permanent solutions rather than temporary housing.