The Definition of Homelessness

1604 WordsFeb 23, 20186 Pages
The definition of homelessness can vary depending who you speak to, but according to Peter Rossi in his text, Down and Out in America, he defines homelessness as “not having customary and regular access to a conventional dwelling; it mainly applies to those who do not rent or own a residence” (Rossi 10). Robert Frost states in his poem, “The Death of the Hired Man”: “Home is the place where, when you have to go there, / they have to take you in” (qtd. in Rossi 14). For people who are branded with the term, “homeless”, there is no place they can go to where “they have to take you in”. They are faced with hardship after hardship. There are several factors that can contribute to why people are without a home and living on the streets, most of which can happen to any one of us, especially in the economy that we are currently living in today. The U. S. Census Bureau reported in 2007 that the population of unsheltered individuals living in Los Angeles alone is over 40,000, which reveals that for every ninety-six sheltered people, there is one homeless individual (Department of Homeless Services 9). The rate is so high specifically in Los Angeles because of the extremely high living costs that we have. The reason why there are so many homeless individuals in America vary depending on person as well as the obstacles they have experienced. In the book, The Homeless: Opposing Viewpoints, different aspects of being homeless are addressed from several different authors,
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