Housing that is not too expensive for people of limited means / having no home or permanent place of residence
People who haven’t had to reside on the streets might not be aware of the stigmas, misconceptions, and obstacles that homeless people face. Those struggling with homelessness frequently lack access to the fundamental requirements housed people take for granted.
Food insecurity, not having a permanent location, and being unable to buy professional clothing are just a few obstacles preventing individuals from leaving the streets.
By impeding their capacity to save money, submit job applications, or even be approved for housing, these obstacles make it much more difficult for their unsheltered neighbors to end the cycle of homelessness. Here are some of the main barriers that homeless people face.
Over half of those who experience hunger are children; each day, approximately 4,000 individuals struggle to put food on the table. A lack of a nutrient-dense diet has been linked in several studies to a higher risk of health issues like heart disease, diabetes, and certain malignancies.
Even one meal a day can significantly lower the risk of short- and long-term health issues brought on by inadequate nutrition or even hunger. Additionally, people have less time and energy to focus on finding resources, housing, and a job when they are worried about where to get their next meal.
Your smile often opens up opportunities and doors, but picture yourself going to a job interview and being afraid to smile because of your looks or bad oral care. Imagine avoiding social situations and trying to blend in due to the guilt you get at the mere mention of missing teeth or other dental problems.
Imagine not being able to eat because each bite causes you severe anguish. These are all things that homeless people are forced to experience.
Lack of Access to Professional Clothing
When applying for a job, first impressions are crucial; regrettably, most companies base their decisions on appearance. A candidate in business attire nearly always has the edge over one who is dressed improperly or carelessly.
Additionally, most service-level professions call for uniforms or required attire like black trousers, button-down shirts, non-slip shoes, or shoes with steel toes. Purchasing clothing may seem like a luxury that many homeless people cannot afford.
No Permanent Address
When seeking to find employment or other sources of income and financial support, those living on the streets may encounter difficulties since they lack a fixed residence. Most employers want a permanent address from job seekers to verify their residency in the state and do background checks.
Unhoused people may find it more difficult to be given preference over applicants with addresses if they lack residence documentation. When applying for employment, some homeless neighbors buy a PO Box or claim a homeless shelter as their address.
Getting Citations for Minor Infractions
Homeless neighbors frequently get cited for infractions, including loitering, sleeping on the sidewalk, removing a store cart without permission, parking a car overnight, or jaywalking.
These violations might pose serious obstacles when seeking a job and a permanent home. Not to mention that purchasing these tickets incurs extra costs for those who do not have the money to do so.
The homeless shelters themselves are a continual and often hidden issue that homeless people deal with. The individuals who need help the most frequently see places that are intended to be helpful as dangerous or even deliberately destructive.
This is due to several factors, some of which are internal to the shelters and homes and others of which are external, such as a lack of finance, shoddy management, or abusive employees.
People frequently choose to live on the streets because of the violence that occurs in shelters. A homeless individual may not necessarily be better off at a shelter. The fact that the shelters lack the resources or personnel required to handle huge numbers of people contributes to the problem.
Why Is Homelessness an Issue?
Homelessness affects more people than just the homeless, and homelessness is an issue. It has detrimental effects on our culture, economy, and public health as well. Because of this, it impacts us all whether or not we experience it.