Why are People Homeless?

A Forgotten Community

By Stan Gordon

In America, estimates of the number of homeless people range from 250,000 to a high three million.

The problem homeless people face today is that the community has forgotten all about them. Many cities have lost affordable housing, increased rent, cut jobs, and maintain poor educational systems. There is usually no support system for the people who end up on the streets.

Homeless individuals usually have few ties with family and friends. Some people who are homeless can only stay with their friends and family for a short period of time. An interagency Council on the Homeless study shows 36% of the homeless population report that they have no friends and over 30% report they have absolutely no contact with their family.

Many homeless people come from high poverty areas. Some are single parents, who have low or no paying jobs and limited education. Others are new to the area, and having trouble adjusting to a new community.

America needs to get involved in finding solutions. We should not just consider this just there “homeless” problem but our problem too. Even though it may not be in your back yard, the streets can someday become your home.

Copyright Homeless Grapevine Summer 1993 Issue 2 Cleveland, Ohio.