The embattled head of the the city’s Department of Homeless Services, Commissioner Gilbert Taylor, will be leaving his post at the end of the year, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced yesterday.
The news came buried in an announcement about a “comprehensive review” of the city’s homeless service agencies and programs.
Taylor’s exit came as the de Blasio administration continues to confrontvociferous criticismover New York’s burgeoning homeless population.
“I feel good about how far I have been able to advance the work of this agency,” Gilbert said, “and [am] committed to working with this administration to assist with this transition.”
The Coalition for the Homeless said that the city’s municipal shelter population “is now 86 percent higher than it was ten years ago” and that nearly 60,000 people live in the shelter system.
That same organizationreportsthat “thousands” of others live on the street with “a large majority … living with mental illness or other severe health problems.”
Men make up at least 80 percent of New York’s street population.
Announcing the shakeup, de Blasio said Taylor will continue to serve the city in an advisory role.
Banks will oversee both the Department of Homeless Services along with his current post starting in January.