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Voices of the Homeless
Voices of the Homeless

AIR DATE: August 4, 2010

When "Sandra" was in her 20's, she and her husband didn't pay the bills. They suddenly found themselves homeless. She handed over the baby to her parents, and started sleeping in parks and junkyards. She recycled cans to buy food, and she drank from garden hoses. "I was an absolute mess," she says. More than 13,000 people were homeless in Clark County last year.

So who is homeless and what are they doing to survive? Are foreclosures and unemployment forcing people to live on the streets? How many are children, and how many of the homeless are mentally ill? Also, who is helping them? And for those who have left the streets, do they miss the homeless community? We often talk about hard numbers on this show& but we rarely find the faces and voices of the homeless themselves. What are their stories?

Linda Lera-Randle El, homeless advocate and Founder, Straight From the Streets

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As someone who awaits his restored unemployment benefits homelessness is a constant worry. Will my benefits be restored this week or next week? If they are restored this week then I don't have pay late charges on my rent. If they are restored next week, I incur late charges.

Late charges are could be one of the contributing factors in creating homelessness because they cause more late charges. Late payment charges for rent will cause one to be late for something else and the late charges for that will cause someone to be late for yet another payment.

This is a treadmill of late payment charges Eventually the amounts paid in late payment charges become so much that had I not had to pay them, I wouldn't be in a situation where the little income that I do receive is constantly eroded by late payments.

This is a sad situation and the greedy companies that insist on charging someone because they are late for something make things worse and put people the edge of homelessness.

The treadmill of late charges could be a factor in making me and many others homeless.

AndreasAug 3, 2010 09:37:35 AM
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