Madison Minnesota

Homeless Youth in America

There are millions of homeless teens in the United States, and it is a very large problem that is going unnoticed. Actions need to be taken.

Dear President:

Have you ever seen a homeless child wandering the streets and not knowing what to do to help? There are millions of homeless youth currently in the United States and the number is only rising. There are not many homeless shelters across the entire country and I am formally asking you to enforce the building of more shelters in the U.S. Homeless youth is a very big problem that is going rather unnoticed.

Many homeless people, or financially unstable youth are having trouble finding affordable housing because apartments can be very expensive in big cities such as New York, San Francisco, and Los Angeles. And unfortunately, public housing is out of reach for many because it is already very full. According to Youth Radio, 23 year old Akeshia Porter, “didn't like her mom's husband and her dad had a drug problem. So at 16 she moved out and became homeless.” This is happening to millions of teens and very often they do not have a place to sleep at night. That is why the country needs to build more homeless shelters, providing services to youth because there is currently not enough to house the entire homeless population. The government needs to help with our taxes and recourses to help provide for more shelters. It would be great if you could promote the building of more places such as covenant house, which is a place that, “pulls children from their homes to protect them from abuse or neglect.” Covenant house gives young children a safe and secure family before they are adults.

Unfortunately, the number of homeless youth in the United States has gone up by 4.5% since 2012. The main causes of unaccompanied youth is due to family problems, economic problems, or residential instability. Fortunately, for some homeless people, there is a non profit organization in San Francisco called Mercy that provides subsidized affordable housing for low income residents, including 25 apartments reserved for 18 to 24-year olds. Cynthia Mendoza describes Mercy housing as her, “first dream to be on my own, to he my own apartment, paying rent, paying bills like a normal adult does.” Cynthia is one of the lucky ones. There are far more low income youth who need houses than there are subsidized apartments available.

Even though homeless youth is a growing problem in the U.S., some people have opposing views towards helping with building more homeless shelters. Some believe that homeless shelters are very dangerous and areas of crime and they don't want to contribute. Others believe that homeless people are just lazy and do not want to work. According the the article, “Homeless not Hopeless”, the author believes that, “homeless people are not honest; they lie to get money and then use that money in ways that will not aid them in any way.” Many refuse to give these people money because of the simple fact that they might be enabling them to keep living in the same wrong path. But, the harsh reality is that they have struggled in the past and they are trying to make a change in their lives for the better.

There is a rapidly growing population of youth homeless across the United States and many cannot fit into shelters and housing is too expensive. It would help the country greatly if you could enforce the building of places such as Covenant house and Mercy housing. You can change the lives of millions of people with just one small action. Thank you so much for reading.