Tag Archives: homelessness

(1290) On the poverty trail

A winter view of the Wentworth Stairs, Hamilton escarpment.
In a balanced community, the trails and parks are major assets.  Greenery and recreation outside are important to so many things, from the development of children to cleaning the air we breathe.  Scenery and recreation are fairly described as necessities.
Something is off when such assets are pressed into use as places to live.  Anyone travelling to Los Angeles lately will have been struck with the scale of urban outdoor living there.  It seems like much of the city has been commandeered by raggedy tents and tarps stretched between poles and sticks to define some privacy for people experiencing socio-economic difficulty.
Such encroachment is problematic in a host of ways.  Safety and hygiene are a challenge for the homeless, to say the least.  Outdoor living in parks and along trails also reduces the pleasure and benefit of such places on the part of others.  It can eliminate that pleasure and benefit completely in some cases.  So, in the best uncomfortable-to-read tradition of this blog we therefore link you to a newspaper item about Hamilton, Ontario.
Hopefully, this issue will receive some sensible amelioration.  Just as the smoke from burning fires in the north seeps across the horizon a sense of psychological uneasiness with the social prospects for Ontario swirls outward as the primal, humid days of Premier Ford’s era unfold.
Hamilton’s ‘out-of-control’ rental market is pushing more homeless to camp out in parks and on streets, advocates say
The Star/Hamilton Spectator on msn.com
image: Colin Payson via Flickr/CC

(1267) Airport homeless

If one thing could be said to symbolize the transition from the twentieth century to the present one it might be the tragic death of glamour in air travel.  Added now to the boring sorrows of security screening, economy seating, airline performance and global carbon footprints must surely be this phenomenon: homeless people living in airports.
Homeless fill Atlanta’s Hartsfield-Jackson airport atrium overnight
myajc.com
image: Mark Goebel via Flickr/CC

(1059) Woods & basements

vaughan-newmarket
Backlash.  We think that’s what you call it when an idea turns and inflicts a set of consequences.  In this case, it’s the sprawl so enthusiastically embraced in so many parts of southern Ontario in the 1980s and 1990s.  For lots of folks, SUVs and monster homes are still working well.  For others, not so much.  It seems a confluence of resources, inequality and a stunning lack of imagination are problematic indeed when it comes to community design.  To wit, recent pieces at cbc.ca/news.  Woods and basements, people.
Beyond Toronto’s borders, homeless means living in the woods. Camps of men without any place to go are situated on Newmarket’s fringes
Hidden poverty lurks in basements of Vaughan monster homes, advocates say. ‘They see the beautiful homes in Vaughan and say, ‘There’s no problem here’

(1006) A little help has big impact on homelessness [Study]

Help
A US study finds tactical, one-time cash assistance in the amount of $1000 has a really good influence on the lives of those about to tip  into homelessness.  Even the crudest cost/benefit analysis of keeping one person out of homelessness, let alone many, ought to reveal the good common sense of this kind of social spending.  An ounce of prevention…
A bit of cash can keep a person off the streets for 2 years or more
sciencemag.com

image: duncan c via Flickr/CC