1 in 50 American Children Homeless; Obama ‘Heartbroken’

At President Barack Obama’s press conference, which ended a short while ago, an African American reporter (Kevin Chappell of Ebony Magazine) raised the issue of 1 in 50 children in America now being homeless and sleeping under bridges and tents across the country because of the current economic crisis.

That’s a big, big shame.

Here’s how President Obama responded to the subject of rising homelessness in America:

I’m heartbroken that any child in America is homeless. The most impoortant thing that I can do on their behalf is to make sure their parents have a job. That’s why the recovery package set as a first priority how are we going to save or create 3.5 million jobs. How can we prevent layoffs for teachers, police officers. How can we make sure that we are investing in the infrastructure for the future that can put people back to work right away. How do we make sure that when people lose their jobs that unemployment insurance is extended that they can keep their healthcare.

So there are a whole host of steps we’ve done to provide a cushion for folks who’ve fallen on very hard times and to try to spur immediate projects that can put people back to work…the homeless problem was bad even when the economy was good.  

Part of the change in attitudes I want to see here in Washington and all across the country is a belief that it’s not acceptable for children and families to be without a roof over their heads in a country as wealthy as ours. And so we’re going to be initiating a range of programs as well to deal with homelessness.

One area in particular I want to focus on is veterans. The rate of homelessness among veterans is much, much higher than for non-veteran populations. And so we’ve got a number of increases that we’re looking for in our budget on veteran’s funding directly addresses the issue of homeless veterans that I think can provide some real help.

4 Responses to "1 in 50 American Children Homeless; Obama ‘Heartbroken’"

  1. joeantony   March 25, 2009 at 12:38 am

    Poor Obama, very unfortunate for him to take office in such a condition, hope he overcomes it.

  2. SRINIVAS   March 25, 2009 at 2:25 am

    what is the meaning of this “Homeless” – Children are staying with thier parents in thier parent’s home and hence they don’t / cannot afford to buy a house for themselves ?? – OR they are on the streets?

    SearchIndia.com Responds:

    1. You write above: what is the meaning of this “Homeless”

    Homelessness in the U.S. context is to not have a home or roof over your head.

    Children do not have a home most often because their parents are too poor to afford to buy/rent a home (in some instances, the kids may have run away from their homes but that’s not very significant in this context).

    2. You write above: OR they are on the streets?

    Unlike India, homeless people in the U.S. are usually not found in large numbers on streets for various reasons – Severe Weather conditions, police, risk of being assaulted, killed et al.

    They are usually to be found in shelters (where the homeless can stay for short durations like say a week or month), under the bridges, tents, in the parks close to some heat vents, near the abandoned subway tracks and abandoned buildings.

    In large cities like Los Angeles, Chicago or New York City, you do see some homeless people (including some lunatics) on the streets. For the most part, there are no government hospitals in the U.S. So prisons let loose lunatics on the streets. Scary, eh?

    3. Plutocratic policies over several decades is slowly causing the U.S. to turn into a Third World country (not there yet but that’s the direction in which we’re moving)

  3. IAmAnIdiot   March 25, 2009 at 11:40 am

    Your mood has been so negative all the time from 2007, most your articles/responses implicit negative stuff. Whatever the reason it does not matter for psychopaths, so look at the world through your negative eyes and see the bad in everything and everyone, including yourself. Prove again and again that you are a sick psychopath.

    SearchIndia.com Responds:

    1. We are not negative but prefer to think of ourselves as pessimists.

    In our view, anyone watching the human condition lately can’t but be a pessimist.

    2. BTW, what’s the status of your upcoming blog?

    You’ve given those of us who are desperately longing to be liberated from the shackles of SI a ray of hope. Pray, do not abandon us in our hour of need. 😉

  4. joeantony   March 26, 2009 at 4:27 am

    Read an article of increasing ‘Freegans’ in NY. May be because of hunger not for philosophy.

    SearchIndia.com Responds:

    Very Interesting. Thanks.

    We see a similarity to the Jains (in some respects).

    Here’s an excerpt from http://freegan.info :

    Freegans are people who employ alternative strategies for living based on limited participation in the conventional economy and minimal consumption of resources. Freegans embrace community, generosity, social concern, freedom, cooperation, and sharing in opposition to a society based on materialism, moral apathy, competition, conformity, and greed.

    After years of trying to boycott products from unethical corporations responsible for human rights violations, environmental destruction, and animal abuse, many of us found that no matter what we bought we ended up supporting something deplorable. We came to realize that the problem isn’t just a few bad corporations but the entire system itself.

    Freeganism is a total boycott of an economic system where the profit motive has eclipsed ethical considerations and where massively complex systems of productions ensure that all the products we buy will have detrimental impacts most of which we may never even consider. Thus, instead of avoiding the purchase of products from one bad company only to support another, we avoid buying anything to the greatest degree we are able.

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