Lily T. Massachusetts

Homelessness In America

Homelessness is affecting a lot of families in the U.S and the president needs to do something about it.

Dear Future President:

Hello, we would like to bring up the matter of homelessness in America. Homelessness is a problem everywhere in the country. So how about we change the situation? Think about it the other way around, How would you feel if you were living on the streets with no house and little or no belongings? Wouldn't you want the government to do something? With the position of president you have the power to change that.

When people in a community all stand up for what's right it really makes a difference in people's lives. From the article in 2009 “Homelessness in America is a growing problem” by Jim Romeo, “727,000 individuals were homeless in 460 communities” In the spring of 2015. Families composed 41 percent of the homeless population, according to a U.S. Which means that there are kids without a home and who have a very less privileged childhood then most of us. It’s also important that everybody grows up with a good education so they can have a happy and resource full life. “Research conducted in 11 communities and 4 states by the national coalition for the homeless found that shelter capacity had more than doubled in the 9 communities and 3 states in the previous decade.”When the community asked the government for 4 billion dollars to help housing and social programs the rate increase by 8.5. “ December 2004 to May of 2005, the number of people in the homeless shelters dropped by 2,379 individuals. Which is the largest decline in any six-month period since 1990.” The number of homeless children dropped by 13 percent in May 2004 to May 2005. Thanks to the money the government gave them it help improve so many people’s lives.

People stood up to help homeless people and give them a place to sleep at night and eat in the morning. As we read in the article “Too Many Rough Sleepers on Streets” by Kate Proctor many thoughts popped in our heads about homelessness. Theresa May is trying to take on homelessness with a million dollar fund for a new project in Southwark, London. “ Too many people sleep rough in London every night.” We can no longer ignore the “injustice on our doorsteps” says the Prime Minister.” It’s important that everyone has a place to live with people who love each other and share a special kind of bond. Theresa May is trying very hard to make the world a better place. “ When I stood on the steps of Downing Street, I said I wanted to build a country that works for everyone, not just the privileged few, based on the value of fairness and opportunity.” With the money Theresa got from the government, the homelessness fund has provided paid work for the jobseekers who are currently or at risk of sleeping on the streets.

Some homeless people have diseases and since they are living on the streets they can’t pay for medicine they can get very ill and die. In this article called “Homelessness linked to poor antipsychotic medication adherence” by Mental Health Weekly Digest that a serious mental illness like schizophrenia that is more likely to be caught by homeless people. Stefanie Rezansoff a report found, “Only 12 percent of the 290 individuals studied were adherent to their medications at the level needed to be effective.” With all the treatment there is a strong connection between low adherence and long-term homelessness.

Homeless people get angry because some of them have to wait years before they can get a home and they think it is very unfair so someone should do something to prevent it. In the article “Housing is a human right” by Yutaka Dirks this article is about what would happen if housing was taking over by the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedom. It’s a fact that people live longer and have happier lives when they feel safe.“In Canada 200,000 people experience homelessness each year, and at least 1.3 million have experienced homelessness or extremely insecure housing in the past five years.” “A 25 year old woman living in shelters,rooming houses, or hotels has a 60 percent chance of living to 75.” People wait years to find affordable housing . In Ontario there are 158,445 households on the social-housing waitlist. Janice Arsenault said, “ I’m 45 years old. I don’t want to wait 10 years to live in a safe place” Janice has struggled to find an apartment that she can afford with the money she received from the government for her disability.The president should do something to make everybody feel safe.

People are stereotyping homeless people because some of them can use that money they get for drugs and alcohol, so they don’t want to risk that even if it is a real homeless person. From the article “It’s not the homeless, it’s the homelessness” by Toby Hall he talked about how a Prime minister received criticisms for donating 5 dollars to a homeless man. What about that is proven as criticism? Why is that wrong? “It’s estimated that the Prime Minister gives $500,000 a year to charity.” People can never know who to trust so they don’t want to risk wasting money for someone who could be a fake. “I always felt deeply uncomfortable criticizing anyone for a gesture of kindness to a fellow human being in this case giving money to a homeless person” When people judge the minister's generosity it's not fair. “Giving $5 to a charity instead of putting it in homeless person's hand isn't going to change that picture.” This quote is powerful because it shows that there is no difference between who you give money to because it’s all going to the same cause. We agree that it’s definitely more safe to donate money to charity but it’s still a good deed to give it to someone in need. “Then there were those who attacked him saying that the money would surly be used for drugs or alcohol and was therefore entrenching the man in poverty.” What these people are doing is called stereotyping. Stereotyping is a widely held but fixed oversimplified image or idea of a particular type of person or thing.

To wrap it all up, we believe that you should take action about what we wrote to make the world a better place. Bringing up the matter of homelessness to you was very important to us and we are determined to help this country. We know you're busy and don’t have a lot of free time on you hands, but we would like to thank you for taking the time that you had for reading our letter. Thank you for all you do for us, and we wish you the best of luck on running our country!

With great respect,

Lily Tracy and Donovan Gravel

Glenbrook Middle School

Grade 7 English Language Arts

The seventh grade students have researched, discussed, and thought carefully about a variety of issues that challenge our nation and the next president. Here are their thoughts about what the next president must do to improve our country and all of our lives.

All letters from this group →