On Thursday, June 23, 2016, the Oregonian Media Group is presenting: The Big Idea: Homelessness.

I reached out to the event Manager for the Oregonian, pleading for having folks with lived experience of homelessness, mental illness, and addictions adequately represented as expert panelist.

The Event Manager for the Oregonian, responded, “it would be great to have as many of your voices represented in the audience.”

When I’m asked the number one reason Portland has not successfully reduced homeless numbers, my response is always the same, the lack of peer involvement in planning.

Are cars designed by engineers who have never driven a car?

Are App’s designed by people who never had a cell phone?

From the events web page, “THE BIG IDEA brings together experts, community leaders, and citizens to discuss important public policy issues affecting Oregonians. The yearlong series explores topics chosen by The Oregonian News & Editorial teams.”

Hey - OREGONIAN - Here's a BIG IDEA, include peers as panelist in your homelessness event.