Homelessness in America Essay

3571 Words Aug 31st, 2013 15 Pages
Homelessness in America
Social Program: Public Housing


The issue of homelessness is one that I can relate to all too well. About twenty five years ago I found myself among the homeless. My story is simple, I had no formal education and was working a job making minimum wage. I couldn’t keep up with my rent and other living expenses and was finally evicted from my overpriced apartment. At the time I was on a waiting list for public housing for which there was at least a two year waiting period. The fact that I was single, with no children did not help me either. For a while I lived on the streets and in shelters, too ashamed to approach what family members I had with my problems knowing that they were
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When it was finally passed as the McKinley Homeless Assistance Act; only the emergency component was implemented. Subsequently, legislation authorized the creation of programs that remain the foundation of this country’s national response to homelessness and are established in distinct departments of the executive branch, each with its own regulations, grant programs and recipient organizations (Kusmer, 2002).

History of Public Housing

The primary purpose of public housing was to reduce housing costs and to improve housing quality for low-income households by providing decent and safe rental housing for eligible low-income families, the elderly and people with disabilities. Initially, most of the apartments were occupied by two-parent low-income working class families. However, by the 1960’s families of color became overrepresented in these apartments, federal funds dwindled, and the white flight began (Blau, 2007). Other goals included promoting residential construction, expanding housing opportunities for disadvantaged groups, groups with special needs promoting neighborhood revitalization, increasing home owner ship, and empowering the poor to become self-sufficient (Dolgoff, 2002). Public Housing is a program that was introduced by the federal government as a part of the 1937 Housing Act which was built on the National Housing Act of 1934, which created the Federal Housing

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