The Facts on Homelessness and Poverty in the USA


Percent of Americans who think the federal government has too much power : 58

That lobbyists, major corporations, banks & financial institutions, respectively, do (Gallup) : 71, 67, 67

Estimated FY ’10 cost to the U.S. of the mortgage interest deduction/tax expenditure (Tax Policy Center) : $131,000,000,000

Percent of this cost that will be written off by individuals making more than $100,000 (WRAP) : 75

Amount of FY ’09 federal appropriations to targeted programs serving all homeless persons : $4,799,000,000

Amount exclusively earmarked for homeless families with children (ICPH) : $0

Cost of all 2008 HUD Homeless Assistance Grants : $1,440,000,000

Cost of one San Antonio Class Amphibious Assault Ship : $1,582,000,000

Cost of all 2008 public housing operating expenses : $4,113,000,000

Cost of one Zumwalt Class Destroyer (WRAP) : $4,127,000,000

Amount of federal money that went to NPR in 2010 (NPR) : $2,700,000

To Jerry Falwell’s Liberty University (U.S. Dept. of Ed.) : $446,000,000

Date on which U.S. student-loan debt is expected to reach $1,000,000,000,000 : 12/1/2011

Chance that an American who earned a B.A. in 2008 will be paying off student loans in 2028 (FinAid) : 1 in 3

Chance that a U.S. job created last year was in a low-wage industry (Nat’l Employment Law Project) : 1 in 2

Percent change in U.S. labor productivity since 1972 : +114

Percent change in wages during that same period (Robert Pollin) : –6

Percent of residents at 2100 Lakeside, a 350-bed men’s shelter in Cleveland, who work (LMM) : 73

Percent of Americans in 2009 who believed the free market “is the best system on which to base the future of the world” : 74

Percent of Americans who believe so today (GlobeScan Inc.) : 59

Percentage of private-sector workers with pension plans in 1979 whose plans were defined-benefit : 62

Today (Employment Benefit Research Inst.) : 7

Average salary difference in 1970 between a starting New York public school teacher & a first-year private lawyer (McKinsey & Co.) : $2,000

Difference today (Nat’l Assn. for Law Placement) : $106,000

Age of the youngest person facing life without parole in the United States (Amnesty Int’l) : 13

Percent of jail inmates who had been homeless in the year prior to their incarceration : 15

Percent of people experiencing homelessness who report time spent in a correctional facility at some point in their lives (NHCHC) : 54

 Percent of fifth-degree felony offenders who are diverted to probation instead of prison in Franklin County & Cuyahoga County, respectively (Justice Center) : 82,66

 Percent higher pay that a Cleveland police officer will receive to appear in a felony case, officers aren’t required to appear for in a misdemeanor case (Mona Lynch) : 50

 Percent more likely that a white offender from suburban or out-of-town areas received a reduced misdemeanor charge as compared to an African-American Clevelander (John Kroll) : 77

 Chances that a convict will be granted parole if his case comes up right after a judge has had breakfast : 7 in 10

Chance right before lunch (Jonathan Levav) : 1 in 4

Percent change in domestic violence when the local NFL team unexpectedly loses a game : +10

When it loses to a traditional rival (Gordon Dahl) : +20

Percent of homeless women who have experienced severe physical or sexual abuse at some point in their lives (Browne & Bassuk) : 92

 Chance that a hotline caller has experienced birth control sabotage & reproductive coercion (Nat’l Domestic Violence Hotline) : 1 in 4

 Number of babies born to mothers living in domestic violence shelters on September 15, 2010 (NNEDV) : 36

 Chance that an American teen suffers from a severe emotional or behavioral disorder (NIMH) : 1 in 5

 Percent by which an American is more likely than a non-American to suffer from bipolar disorder (NIMH) : 100

Recovery rate for individuals who receive treatment & medication for bipolar disorder, addiction, & cancer, respectively (ADAMHS) : 80%, 70%, 68%

Chance that an Ohioan is impacted by a friend or family member with a mental illness or addiction : 2 in 3

Percent by which murder-suicides have increased since 2000 (OACBHA) : 300

Confirmed number of terrorist plots against the United States perpetrated by Muslims in 2010: 10

By non-Muslims (Muslim Public Affairs Council) : 25

Rank of 2010 among the deadliest years for Afghan civilians since the war began (UN) : 1

May unemployment rate for recent male veterans, of OEF & OIF (U.S. Dept. of Labor) : 12.9

Estimated number of veterans in prison (Bureau of Justice Statistics) : 140,000

Number of Ohio’s 41 Vietnam Veterans of America chapters that consist entirely of incarcerated veterans (Tom Burke) : 9

Approximate annual cost to the Buffalo taxpayer to hold one county prisoner : $32,000

Approximate annual cost of one participant in Buffalo’s Veterans Court, a prison diversion & rehab program : $7,000

Rate of recidivism of participants in Buffalo’s Veterans Court (Judge Robert Russell/Reuters) : 0

Copyright Northeast Ohio Coalition for the Homeless and The Street Chronicle published June 2011 Cleveland, Ohio