Impact of the economic downturn on families.

The problem of homelessness is widespread in the US and it is caused by different factors. Research has indicated that about 61% of local and homeless coalitions have witnessed a rise in homelessness since the foreclosure crisis began in 2007 (Armour, 2008). The most vulnerable group include Anglo, African American, Latino, Asian, gay and lesbian, and Native American families who often belong to low income brackets. The other issue is that the problem is compounded by economic downturn on families. Armour (2008) further states that apart from foreclosures, the problem of homelessness is further worsened by “mounting utility bills, the surge in gas prices and the rise in unemployment, which jumped from 5% to 5.5% according to the government report.” Many families are finding it difficult to make ends meet under such circumstances.

The problem of homelessness is a national crisis and indeed, the US should address homeless families. Unfortunately, the existing legislation does nothing to protect the renters to avoid eviction (Rodriguez, n.d.). However, the government has a responsibility of ensuring that all the citizens have shelter. This is the reason why President Barack Obama signed into law The Protecting Tenants at Foreclosure Act in 2009 (Rodriguez, n.d.). The government also has a role to provide more support for the families since it is part of its mandate. For instance, the government can play an active role in providing affordable shelter to the citizens in a bid to fight the problem of homelessness. In case of crisis, the government should play an active role in offering support to the affected families. This can be done through providing basic things like temporary shelter, clothing as well as food among other things. For instance, The Recovery Act has played a significant role in mitigating the problem of homelessness which is advocated (United States Interagency Council of Homelessness, 2013).

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References

Armour, S. (26 June 2008). “Hitting Home: New faces join ranks of the homeless.” USA TODAY

Retrieved from: http://usatoday30.usatoday.com/money/economy/housing/2008-06-25-homeless-families-foreclosure_N.htm

Rodriguez, D. (n.d). “Stop shutting the door on renters: Protecting tenants from foreclosure evictions. “Cornell Journal of law and Public Policy. Vol. 20:243.

United States Interagency Council of Homelessness. (2013). “The Federal Government’s Role in Ending Family Homelessness.” Retrieved from: http://usich.

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