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What are you most curious about around homelessness in Seattle? We are taking your questions

There’s no sugarcoating what’s happening around our city, all. More than 12,000 of our neighbors are living without a home in King County — half of them in tents, cars, or parks. It’s one of the worst homelessness crises in the country, and easily one of our toughest challenges.

Can we solve a problem this urgent and confounding? Hell yes we can. 💪 But first, we need to understand what’s going on. And that starts with all of you.

When you think about homelessness in Seattle, what questions do you have? We don’t mean the kind of questions you ask to sound smart. We mean the honest questions that exist in your hearts right now — regardless of what anyone else thinks, knows, or expects. Questions like, “What is it like to be homeless here?” “Is anything working?” and “Why is homelessness getting worse when we’re spending so much money?”

WHY WE’RE ASKING: We want to answer your questions so we can all learn from them. And we have help! Our friends at GeekWire are asking their readers to share their questions around homelessness today, too. And on July 19, Crosscut, Seattlepi.com, Real Change, and possibly more partner outlets will extend the callout to their readers. If that sounds unusual, that’s ‘cause it is: This may be the first time Seattle media outlets will collaborate to better listen to you, the people we serve.

OUR BIG HAIRY AUDACIOUS GOAL? To hear from as many of you as possible so our reporting can have the biggest impact in our city. If all 9,000 Evergrey readers submit one question, imagine what we’ll all learn about what we most need to know. Add our partners’ tens of thousands of local readers and whoa. We can do some really good work with you.

SO HERE’S HOW THIS WORKS:

  • YOU ASK. Submit your questions about homelessness in Seattle above. You can choose to remain anonymous so we don’t publish your name.
  • YOU VOTE. We’ll get together with GeekWire and select questions, then we’ll ask readers to vote on which questions they would most like to see us answer.
  • WE (AND OUR PARTNERS!) REPORT. The Evergrey and GeekWire will each produce one story based on the questions you select that will run on July 19.
  • WE DO IT ALL AGAIN — BUT BIGGER. On July 19, Real Change, Crosscut, Seattlepi.com, and possibly more awesome local media will join the callout, and we’ll all take more questions and votes to report one more story. You can submit a question with any of our partners, and any of our partners could answer it. We’ll let you know what questions are answered and where in this newsletter. By the end of the project, this humble squad of local journalists will have written at least seven stories based on your questions. 🙌

Are you in? Awesome. Submit your question above and let’s get started!

Big thanks to GeekWire, Crosscut, Seattlepi.com, and Real Change for accepting our invite to try this out with us; to Crosscut for coordinating #SeaHomeless day July 19, when several local media outlets will cover stories around homelessness in Seattle; to Hearken for letting us use their tool for this collaborative local project; and to all of you for thinking and caring about your city.

By Mónica Guzmán
Mónica is the cofounder and editor of The Evergrey. She's been a Seattle journalist for a decade and adores this city.