Just after coverage of the Homelessness Report Card for 2013 The Star published a profile of a single mother involved with social services, experiencing concurrent difficulties and said to be sleeping at night in play structures in parks while pregnant and in the company of her fifteen-month-old son. Now, these profiles of life at the bottom in the major cities of North America are never particularly hard to find. The hope is that such stories contribute to change. Unfortunately, this one could have been in the paper in June of 1983 just as easily as last week. The only real difference might be found in the setting. Lisa Roberts has been living outdoors since May in Whitby, a satellite community lying east of Toronto. Life in Whitby has been characterized by fast population growth, by sprawl, for years now. We even find Canada’s Tory federal Minister of Finance to be the Member of Parliament for Whitby suggesting extra-strength neoconservative values there, values not readily attached to social spending or even sympathy for those in difficulty. And the reader comments! …when did Canadians become such snarky, reductive, reactive, socially conservative people? Even allowing for a certain pathology to the act of online reader commentary there is some hate going on down there, people.
Homeless in the GTA: finding affordable housing especially tough for women
See also: (317) Durham Region
image: 1877 map of Whitby by JH Beers via Wikimedia Commons
When the mortgage bomb blew, the banks began caving in, the governments began bailing out, the Baltic Dry Index nosedived, railway equipment, trucks and airliners were parked all over the place with nothing to carry the Great Recession seemed to hit men hard. The post-2008 crash was in fact nicknamed a “Mancession” because unemployment in construction and manufacturing was a huge part of it all. It’s also, apparently, the era of the descent of man. Now, in the UK at any rate, a study indicates the bad news is catching up with women. Such as the economy there can be said to be in a recovery, or at least skimming past a so-called triple-dip recession, the new action in job-creation is benefitting women less than it should.
Unemployment among UK women rising to 25-year high, survey finds: almost three times as many women as men have become long-term unemployed since 2010, says Fawcett Society
You can link directly to the report from this guardian.co.uk article
image: woman installing electrical equipment in an aircraft plant in the 1940s via Imperial War Museum – Wikimedia Commons
The Western Journal of Emergency Medicine published a paper this July describing problems associated with addiction services in suburban areas. This is the kind of piece that expands our understanding of what suburban poverty means in a needed, detailed way. Much of the discussion of low density, ex-urban life focusses on matters of land use, environmental sustainability, energy, politics, taste and aesthetics. We are now long beyond the point where social realities need to be considered on an equal footing with the physical design of communities.
Suburban Poverty: Barriers to Services and Injury Prevention among Marginalized Women who Use Methamphetamine