Summary: The Epidemic Of Homelessness

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Homeless is defined as living without a home; without a roof over your head; no fixed address; living on the streets. One assumes no permanent residence but may ‘squat’ in particularly common areas like parks, under bridges, in a vehicle or in empty buildings. The homeless refers to a group of people without a common dwelling and without the ability to maintain a safe residence. This term includes people who sleep in a public or private place not designed to accommodate humans, such as a card board box.
Shelters are available to those living without a home. These are funded and maintained by city and state government bodies. This was established in 1981 after a class action suit in New York City was brought against them by a lawyer two years
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Employment issues represent a large factor due to lack of employment opportunities such as unemployment and underemployment. Poverty contributes to homelessness typically as a result of the aforementioned employment issues. Natural disasters such as hurricanes, tornadoes, earthquakes and volcanic eruptions as well as flooding and large, widespread fires can wipe out homes across cities leaving many without residence very quickly and unexpectedly. In the past, war has contributed to homelessness due to economic depressions during these periods and veteran homelessness after war. Medical conditions are also a major contributor to the homeless epidemic in the United States. Physical disabilities contribute to poverty because of an inability to work often and earn a sustainable income. Mental health issues, disorders and traumatic brain injuries leave individuals with a limited mental capacity to manage daily responsibilities. A forced eviction or foreclosure can happen quickly leaving the resident with nowhere to go. Release from prison and re-entry into society can leave someone homeless if they have no place to return to prior to their sentencing. Substance abusers, when people are chronic illegal drug users, may not have the ability to sustain employment and could possibly turn to crime. Any monies acquired are spent on the drugs, even from some women who turn to prostitution to maintain their habit. Substance abuse …show more content…
Controversially, some feel we also have a responsibility to those with life, struggling against the elements without residence. Homeless people have become invisible to the community in which they roam. Those in favor of assisting and rehabilitating homeless people and families do so as they feel their position violates human dignity. Some also believe it is the moral and ethical responsibility of the community and/or elected officials to care for the poor. While homelessness is not viewed as a crime, there is further controversy as to whether child protective services should be contacted when families with children are faced with homelessness. It is certainly a consideration that homeless persons seek emergency medical treatment for conditions such as tuberculosis, mental illness, addiction and abuse. The cost of these services typically relies on government resources. Some homeless fear the shelters made available to them citing crime including theft, assault or for those with mental illness, which could contribute to a fear of

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