Tuesday, November 27, 2012 by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)

The Faces of New York City’s 20,000 Homeless Kids

Some Records Should be Fixed, Not BrokenToday’s Metro highlights the record-breaking number of homeless kids currently sleeping in New York City shelters. Coalition for the Homeless recently unveiled a new public awareness campaign, which is visible in subway stations, bus shelters, and phone booths across the City, highlighting the growth in child homelessness.

An astonishing 20,000 kids now sleep in the shelter system each night—a 20 percent increase over the same time last year. The reason behind this record is a complete lack of affordable housing options for homeless families. For the past 20 months, the City has had no programs in place to help homeless families move from shelter to permanent housing. Moreover, the City is still experiencing fallout from its failed experiment with time-limited rental subsidies. Thousands of kids and families have returned to shelter for a second time after their Advantage rental subsidies ran out. Read our recent report on Advantage returns here.

One homeless mother tells of the hardships her daughters are facing in Metro:

The girls are happy in school, for the most part, she said. But some of the other kids know they live in a shelter and make fun of them.

A classmate teased her daughter, "Look, homegirl right there lives in a shelter."

"She was crying," Cavita recounted. "There's just not anything I can do about the situation right now."
But she's been saving money since August and is hopeful they can move soon.

"Once they have their own home, they'll be OK," Cavita said.

It's time for Mayor Bloomberg to step up and provide real housing solutions to New York's 20,000 homeless kids and families.

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