Wikinvest Wire

The laughter from the martini bar

Thursday, May 07, 2009

A look at the growing homeless population comes in this report from USA Today. There's more than a little irony in the fact that all the former housing bubble states now have the simultaneous problems of a rising homeless rate and record numbers of unoccupied homes.


The third interview subject, Kevin Shutt, comments, "I've made Caesar salads table side, carved Chateaubriand - I can't get a job at Taco Bell."

Some details about Mr. Grondin, Mr. Marshall, and others from the video.
Jim Marshall recalls everything about that beautiful fall day.

The temperature was about 70 degrees on Nov. 19, the sky was "totally blue," and the laughter from a martini bar drifted into the St. Petersburg park where Marshall, 39, sat contemplating his first day of homelessness.

"I was thinking, 'That was me at one point,' " he says of the revelers. "Now I'm thinking, 'Where am I going to sleep tonight? Where do I eat? Where do I shower?' "

The unemployed Detroit autoworker moved to Florida last year hoping he'd have better luck finding a job. He didn't, and he spent three months sleeping on sidewalks before landing in a tent city in Pinellas County, north of St. Petersburg, on Feb. 26.

Marshall is among a growing number of the economic homeless, a term for those newly displaced by layoffs, foreclosures or other financial troubles caused by the recession. They differ from the chronic homeless, the longtime street residents who often suffer from mental illness, drug abuse or alcoholism.
The "economic homeless". Aside from the Great Depression, is that something that has ever been seen before in the U.S.?

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

That's the nature of a boom town. People moving out to (Cali, Lost Wages, Floriduh) are by definition more transient. Most such relocators hadn't amassed any savings in their prior location, or they would not have felt compelled to move. Most relocators have minimal savings, so any disruption in their cash flow puts them out on the streets. This is a gross generalization, but most people succeed financially by planting roots in a community and working hard where they are, rather than rushing off to seemingly greener pastures. Of course, some places - like Detroit - are uniquely challenged, and leaving might make more sense.

Dan said...

This town needs a monorail!

dearieme said...

""economic homeless"...is that something that has ever been seen before in the U.S.?"
It was the fate of many of the Red Indians, wasn't it?

donna said...

Most of the homeless are economically homeless, being unable to afford their proper medication....

National health care could go a long way towards solving the "homeless problem".

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