FRIHOSTFORUMSSEARCHFAQTOSBLOGSCOMPETITIONS
You are invited to Log in or Register a free Frihost Account!


Homelessness, Hunger Rising in USA





handfleisch
http://news.yahoo.com/s/afp/20081212/ts_alt_afp/uspovertyeconomyhomelessfood;_ylt=Amu.DLiLR4dOSyzTQoHK9bOyBhIF

Quote:
WASHINGTON (AFP) – Homelessness and hunger increased in an overwhelming majority of 25 US cities in the past year, driven by the foreclosure crisis and rising unemployment, a survey showed Friday.

Out of 25 cities across the United States surveyed by the US Conference of Mayors, 83 percent said homelessness in general had increased over the past year while 16 cities, or nearly two-thirds of those polled, cited a rise in the number of families who had been forced out of their homes.

In Louisville, Kentucky, the number of homeless families increased 58 percent in 2008 to 931 families from 591 people in 2007, with the rise blamed on soaring food, health care, transportation and energy prices.

Boston, Massachusetts and Providence, Rhode Island blamed the rise in family homelessness on evictions by landlords whose rental properties were foreclosed.

Meanwhile, the number of people seeking food assistance for the first time was up in all 21 cities with data on the issue, and was "particularly notable among working families stressed by the increase in food prices and the slowdown in the economy," the report said.


Unless there is some kind of major reversal in the way the US has been going, it's headed toward being a real third world country. Think Brazil -- rich country with high levels of poverty.
deanhills
Well, my jaw is not quite on the ground on this one, but although I can agree that the gap between poor and rich will widen signficiantly with more people getting very poor, I cannot compare it with the poor in South America. That said, it does not make it less of a worry. How do you think the problem should be dealt with?
handfleisch
deanhills wrote:
Well, my jaw is not quite on the ground on this one, but although I can agree that the gap between poor and rich will widen signficiantly with more people getting very poor, I cannot compare it with the poor in South America. That said, it does not make it less of a worry. How do you think the problem should be dealt with?


It looks like it requires a very direct confronting of the problem, a preemptive, made-to-scale FDR-style programs before things get to the point they were in the Depression. So far, Obama's plans and methods sound just right.
deanhills
handfleisch wrote:
deanhills wrote:
Well, my jaw is not quite on the ground on this one, but although I can agree that the gap between poor and rich will widen signficiantly with more people getting very poor, I cannot compare it with the poor in South America. That said, it does not make it less of a worry. How do you think the problem should be dealt with?


It looks like it requires a very direct confronting of the problem, a preemptive, made-to-scale FDR-style programs before things get to the point they were in the Depression. So far, Obama's plans and methods sound just right.


Agreed. I really like his motto: "yes we can". I am trying to incorporate some of it in my own life right now. Setting objectives along "yes we can" lines. Creating timelines, and then do the action thing. Smile Think that is what I like about Obama too. This being active and action oriented. Positive energy. We need all of that.
ocalhoun
handfleisch wrote:
So far, Obama's plans and methods sound just right.


^.^ I was right! ^.^
I guessed when I first saw the topic (only one post at that time) the last time I was here that your next post in it would include the name Obama...

One thing I think could help with this problem is some serious reform in the ways the government helps people in these situations.

I remember one time talking to a lady who was living in government-supplied housing for the homeless. She was perfectly able to work, but wasn't looking for a job at all: you see, if she got a job, she would be kicked out of government housing! So, she had to choose between having a home and having a job.

Allowing situations like that to exist only wastes taxpayer money, and wastes the possible productivity of that person.
handfleisch
deanhills wrote:

Agreed. I really like his motto: "yes we can". I am trying to incorporate some of it in my own life right now. Setting objectives along "yes we can" lines. Creating timelines, and then do the action thing. Smile Think that is what I like about Obama too. This being active and action oriented. Positive energy. We need all of that.


Exactly. That's awesome you have been inspired by the Yes We Can campaign to focus on the positive and trying to be proactive. I am too. We all do need all of that. Congratulations and let's rock 2009 and start anew.
Nick2008
Not a surprise to me, just look at all the fed interest rate cuts and job losses! I mean wouldn't it be odd if the news was that people are getting richer? And at the same time there's record job loses and interest rate cuts? Laughing

Whether or not Obama can fix this problem is controversial. We just need to wait and see. Just so you know the president can't do much, the congress, house of representatives, and the supreme court must all agree in conjunction with the president to pass any act or action.

And yes, there are still republicans in the congress and house of representatives.

So we'll just have to wait and see, not much time left to wait, just a little over a month now; hang in there.
c'tair
So, it means that if you want to work and have cash for food and housing, you'll get it?

Remember, once something slips and you become homeless, the world it a lot more gray for you, aka depression hits you like poop hits the fan, and it ain't easy to just get up, pick up the broken pieces and glue them back together.
ocalhoun
c'tair wrote:
it ain't easy to just get up, pick up the broken pieces and glue them back together.

Who says its got to be easy? If you have to do it to survive, you'll do it no matter how hard it is. If you can survive okay without doing it, then why bother with something that's so hard?
Libby
Ways we can help:
1) Ask homeless/poor people what they need and give them what they need whenever we can.
2) Create real local communities, as in people who know their neighbors and CARE for them. Not "care" as in have nice warm fuzzy feelings, but care like, take care of.
3) Let people squat in abandoned buildings and don't rat on them to the cops/absentee owners.
4) Garden. Grow more than you can eat yourself.

And there's lots more but I don't want to go into anything politcal.
Futile
I have worn many hats over my lifetime but one of the ones that I wear now and have worn over the last 3 years has really opened my eyes to the simple things that I and a lot of people take for grant it. Three years ago, I took on a part time job for the holidays to make a little extra cash, and I am still there. This job was at a pawnshop as a pawn broker. Over the past three years I have seen it happen on several occasions. A customer will come in to pawn an item in order to get them over a day or two until payday. They come back and get it on payday. Needless to say that sometimes this starts a cycle that expands to bringing the same item back sooner and then getting it out later, until finally the item is defaulted on. I have watched helpless as single men, single women and even whole families; go from home to homeless, job to jobless. Sometimes I think that we, as Middle Class and higher, tend to not realize that a hell of a lot of us are living pay check to pay check. And that the slightest unforeseen event, a lay off, a death or an accident can send these people’s lives into an unrecoverable tailspin. I myself was close to being in similar situation but I have family and good friends that I was able to rely on. Unfortunately everyone is not as well blessed as I am. Bottom line is this not going away anytime soon. And I feel that it going to get a lot worse before it gets better.
ocalhoun
Futile wrote:
are living pay check to pay check.

Mistake #1.

Granted, I'm sure there are a few that really couldn't help doing so, but surely there are a great many who instead of putting $50 in savings every month payed a $50 cable bill every month.

Then, when something happens and their income dries up, they are instantly broke, while if they had just made do with broadcast TV, and put some money in savings, they would have enough to live on for a while until they could find new income.

If you live without planning for emergencies, I have no pity for you when you are ruined by an emergency you didn't plan for.
coolclay
This situation doesn't surprise me at all. Our country has been headed in this direction fast for many years, and certainly at least all my life (I am 23).

We live in a throw-away society that has been completely brainwashed into this buy buy, gotta have everything consumeristic mindset. I attribute the financial crisis in the US to this as well.

For years people have been told they can have everything they want no matter how much money they actually make, a little thing called credit can get you whatever you want. I know so many people that live in huge houses, have new cars, and every other convenience you can imagine and make very little money.

I thank my family so much for teaching me how to fix things when they were broken, and how to live within my means. My family has never bought anything we didn't have the money to buy except for maybe a house.

Ocalhoun once again you hit the nail on the head. I used to work for an appliance installation company (well I still do occasionally). So many times I have been in ratty old trailer homes, in a trailer park, but somehow these people still manage to have HUGE flatscreen tv's and I am sure either cable or satellite TV. Not to mention I am sure cell phones, computer, internet, satellite radio, soda, cigarettes, beer and how knows what other very non necessary conveniences.

It's nothing for some people spend $100-$500/month or more on only conveniences. That's $1200-$6000 a year. Imagine all the things you could buy with that or think maybe even invest some of it!

But yes I also agree the welfare system/disability system needs to be completely overhauled and changed. Unfortunately I don't think we are going to see it under "Mr.Spread the wealth's" presidential watch.
Futile
In a picture perfect world everyone should have at least 2 to 3 paychecks worth of cash in savings, but it isn’t and to just assume that someone just wants to be content with living paycheck to paycheck is as bad as assuming that someone wants to remain homeless. I am not saying that people don’t over extend themselves, but what one man considers frivolous may be a necessity to the next. It is not our place to say yes or no on that call.
It is very easy to sit back and say people should do this or do that if you have not been in that situation or experience anything to that severity. Ocalhoun and coolclay, since I have been on these forums I have always respected your views and opinions. I may not always agree with them, but I respect them. They have always been insightful, useful, and humorous at times. I know that age is just a number and doesn’t really mean anything in a lot of situations, but I think that in this case it does come into play. I can rightly assume that you are both in your early 20’s and are single, single meaning unmarried. If I am wrong in this I apologize. It is always easier when the only one you are responsible for is you. I speak from personal experience back in 2001 with the dot com crash. Here is the Silicone Hills, Austin, all of a sudden within a 2 week period there are about 3 to 4 thousand unemployed. At the time I had a wife and my first daughter, a house and a car note. I was unemployed for almost 8 months before I found a job. I had a savings and 401K which I used over those months to keep my family above water. My point here is having lived through it and come out still standing. I have learned not to be so quick to pass judgment or lump people into the same category. Everyone is different and what works for one person may not work for the next person in the same situation.
ocalhoun wrote:
If you live without planning for emergencies, I have no pity for you when you are ruined by an emergency you didn't plan for.

You can’t plan for every emergency and if you think that you can you are sadly mistaken. It is not like you wake up in the morning and make a To Do List:
1. Drop the kids off at school
2. Go to work
3. Get T-boned by a car whose driver ran a red light because he was talking on his cell phone and you can’t work for 3 months because of the accident.
Or
4. You go to work and get laid off with no warning along with 100 other fellow workers.
Or
5. You’re watching TV and have a stroke or heart attack.

These are a little extreme, but things happen that are outside of our realm of control and the ones that you have no control are the ones that hit you the hardest.

Dictionary .com defines an emergency as: a sudden or unexpected appearance; an unforeseen occurrence; a sudden occasion.

No one can plan for an emergency. You can only prepare for it one and then pray you don’t have to move forward on those preparations.
ocalhoun
Futile wrote:

3. Get T-boned by a car whose driver ran a red light because he was talking on his cell phone and you can’t work for 3 months because of the accident.

The insurance pays for a new car and all your medical bills and time lost from work. Just in case, you have enough saved up to live on for that long, but you shouldn't have to use it.
Quote:

4. You go to work and get laid off with no warning along with 100 other fellow workers.

Well, good thing you have several months of savings to use while you get a new job. Luckily, you saw ahead that many people have been being layed off from your career lately, and you've been preparing for a career change for some time now. (Too bad for those poor saps who just kept saying "it won't happen to me")
Quote:

5. You’re watching TV and have a stroke or heart attack.

Guess you should have been doing something more active than watching TV, and perhaps it wouldn't have happened. Supposing that it happened to you despite a healthy lifestyle, at least your otherwise healthy body will recover more quickly and easily than it otherwise would.


You can't predict everything, but you can plan for the unpredicted.
Emergencies WILL happen. You never know exactly what you might need during an emergency, but some things commonly help in all emergency situations:
-Cash on hand enough to live on for a significant amount of time.
-History of a good, healthy lifestyle.
-Insurance on anything you can't afford to loose.

How do you get those things to help in emergencies? You have to make sacrifices. Work out, or at least do something fun and active instead of watching cable TV. That takes care of the first two, and once you have enough saved up to feel comfortable, you can choose to either get insurance on what you can't do without, or save up enough to replace what you can't do without.
coolclay
Futile, I understand that and certainly value and respect your opinion. Especially since you have been in that position before. While it is true you can't plan for emergencies you can certainly ease there affect my planning ahead and being prepared.

I also have been through a similar situation except on the other end of it as a child. I grew up most of my life living with a single mother, 2 siblings, and my mother making less than $10k as a bus driver. Growing up we always lived within our means. I don't think I ever had new clothing at all growing up or even still now as a young adult, I always get clothing for free either from hand me downs from family members, dumpster diving, or thrift stores. We never had cable tv or satellite, only the 5 channels we could get with our rabbit ear antennas, and an ancient wooden framed monstrosity of a tv from the late 70's. One Christmas in particular was really tight and my mother couldn't even afford any gifts we had to put a gift request in to our church who helped us with a few little things.

Even through all that my mother was still able to save away
harismushtaq
I personally beleive there are still far more natural resources, skilled people, raw materials, power and electricity, fuel etc in US that they can make every one in thier country happy. Only it is a matter of planning and doing work with justice and no fraud involved. With all the recession, still the executives of big compainies in recession have chartered jets for travel. Labourers will be laid off and millioners will remain millioners. Only injust wayof running the economy.
Futile
Ocalhoun , you missed your calling you should be a lawyer. Those were just examples and you automatically assumed that the person that was involved had automatically done something “irresponsible” on their behalf in order to get put in a situation. I really liked the one about getting off the couch. FYI 85% of people who suffer from heart attacks and strokes have no warning before hand. I should have used an athlete having a heart attack but then you probably would have said that he was out of shape. Laughing

But seriously please take it at face value and do not read into it. No one can prepare for every emergency. Anyone who has been through an insurance issue will tell you that if it is less than a few thousand, like 5 the check is forth coming. The insurance company will take its sweet time to pay a large settlement. The reality of the situation is that until you are put into that situation you do not know how you will react.

@coolclay
I know people who have been and are in the same situation that you were. I commend and have the utmost respect for your mother. The government needs to put a few single moms like yours in charge of the national budget then we wouldn’t have this economic crisis that we have now.
ocalhoun
Futile wrote:
Ocalhoun , you missed your calling you should be a lawyer. Those were just examples and you automatically assumed that the person that was involved had automatically done something “irresponsible” on their behalf in order to get put in a situation.

Not for the first two at least. Getting hit by a car or getting laid off can happen to even the most responsible people, but those responsible people are the ones that can recover from such things without major problems.
Quote:
I really liked the one about getting off the couch. FYI 85% of people who suffer from heart attacks and strokes have no warning before hand. I should have used an athlete having a heart attack but then you probably would have said that he was out of shape. Laughing

You don't have to have warning of something to prepare for it, and by the time you have warning of a heart attack, its much too late to prevent it by working out! You should get yourself in good shape regardless of if you think you're about to have a heart attack or not. And yes, I'd assume an athlete who had a heart attack was probably either a) starting up training too hard and too fast after an unhealthy previous lifestyle or b) doing steroids.
Quote:

But seriously please take it at face value and do not read into it. No one can prepare for every emergency.

No, but everyone can prepare for most emergencies. Those who don't suffer the consequences.
((Yes, there are a very few people who end up on the streets despite the very best preparation, and without contributing to the problem at all, but that is very rare.))
Quote:
Anyone who has been through an insurance issue will tell you that if it is less than a few thousand, like 5 the check is forth coming. The insurance company will take its sweet time to pay a large settlement.

I have been through an insurance issue.
They payed out over $250,000 and I never had to do anything other than sign a few papers, and all the money came in promptly when needed. They even paid me for time lost from work when I didn't know that I was entitled to it.
Quote:

The reality of the situation is that until you are put into that situation you do not know how you will react.

Only if you have no control over your own actions. Personally, I can give an account of what I'd do in nearly any situation you could ask about. (Though I may lie to you, depending on the acceptability of my actions.)
distantship
come on, which big country doesn't have these kinds of problems? even smaller ones. The issues you states are happening everywhere...just that usually these problems can be really hard to improve, let alone solved in the big ones.
c'tair
deanhills wrote:
Well, my jaw is not quite on the ground on this one, but although I can agree that the gap between poor and rich will widen signficiantly with more people getting very poor, I cannot compare it with the poor in South America. That said, it does not make it less of a worry. How do you think the problem should be dealt with?


I also think it requires a change in people's mentality. Go away from the american dream, you don't need two cars and a load of family calling plans plus 2 LCD/plasma TVs per head in a house. I think that Americans are just overspending, getting into huge credit debt and then cry "RECESSION!".

Sure, it's not easy, I just got a part time job and my pay is low, but I'm not buying so much unnecessary crap, I don't even have a credit card and I'd rather save up for something than get it now only to pay 10% interest on it later.

Time is money. My time on this world is very limited, I'd rather work less, make less money, but have more time for myself.
deanhills
c'tair wrote:
I also think it requires a change in people's mentality. Go away from the american dream, you don't need two cars and a load of family calling plans plus 2 LCD/plasma TVs per head in a house. I think that Americans are just overspending, getting into huge credit debt and then cry "RECESSION!".
Perhaps that is the picture that people get from outside the United States, no doubt thanks to movies, TV shows and the Internet, but there are also genuinely poor and homeless people in the United States who do not own any of these luxuries, who don't even have a home and have to battle on a daily basis to find food. The United States is more of a capitalist country and does not have the free social services on the same standard as that which is provided in Europe. The poor is therefore even poorer in the United States than compared with countries in Europe with a high level of social services and free medical care. Agreed that there is overspending, but only by those who can overspend, mostly the rich, who seem to be backed by a Government which is looking after the rich, especially because the rich is backing the Government in return viz a plutocracy.
Related topics
Where do you live?
Europe vs. Usa lol
I NEED ALL YOUR HELP
Coalition of the Gloating: No Hurricane Relief for USA!
Eliminate California from USA?
Civilian Casualties in Iraq...
USA Today = owned
And so it begins???
usa condon!!!
Aliens - Myth or reality?
The rotting flesh that is our political system
Alguien usa PHPList???
African Exports to USA/China
Obama's First 100 days - a start on Gitmo BUT not enough
Reply to topic    Frihost Forum Index -> Lifestyle and News -> Discuss World News

FRIHOST HOME | FAQ | TOS | ABOUT US | CONTACT US | SITE MAP
© 2005-2011 Frihost, forums powered by phpBB.