Making Homelessness A Crime On Both Sides Of The Atlantic

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Pillows and Quilt

Two items of news stood out this morning. They come from totally different sources in different countries and they are discussing proposals to make homelessness illegal. Coming from different sides of the Atlantic, their messages are remarkably similar and the proposals made by US and UK lawmakers could have come from the same speech writer.

In the US, Marc Sarnoff, City Commissioner of Miami, is trying to make it illegal to be homeless. He wants to ban sleeping on park benches, meeting friends, congregating in public spaces and even eating while walking along the street. (source)

In the UK public space protection orders, part of the Anti-social Behavior Crime and Policing Bill (which was outlined in the Queens speech earlier in July), would effectively allow police  to prevent groups meeting in parks and make illegal the utilization of a park bench as a bed for the night. You can read more here.

Homelessness needs to be tackled by the provision of affordable housing,  not by making those people forced to live on our streets into criminals.

The fact that there are so many people forced to live on the streets is testament to the sad state both the US and the UK are in. Banks foreclosing on family homes left many with no option but to set up homes in campers, cars and vans. Tent cities have sprung up under road bridges and makeshift camps can be found in many wooded areas as families struggle to get back on their feet.

Sadly there are going to be more and more people falling foul of these laws if they are passed. Decent jobs are nigh on impossible to come by and when those jobs are removed from the market, by company closure or outsourcing, they are replaced by minimum wage part time positions that cannot hope to feed and house a family.

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Contributed by Chris Carrington of The Daily Sheeple.

Chris Carrington is a writer, researcher and lecturer with a background in science, technology and environmental studies. Chris is an editor for The Daily Sheeple. Wake the flock up!

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  • Affordable housing may not be the answer, either. I was told that I could not be absent from my affordable housing even though I needed to be away( far away) to work so that I could pay my “affordable housing” rent! In other words there are stupi=id rules in “affordable housing” that can make u homeless!

  • Affordable housing may not be the answer, either. I was told that I could not be absent from my affordable housing even though I needed to be away( far away) to work so that I could pay my “affordable housing” rent! In other words there are stupi=id rules in “affordable housing” that can make u homeless!

  • Affordable housing may not be the answer, either. I was told that I could not be absent from my affordable housing even though I needed to be away( far away) to work so that I could pay my “affordable housing” rent! In other words there are stupi=id rules in “affordable housing” that can make u homeless!

    • tentdweller

      so true

  • Pat Cannon

    I AM a 65 yr old woman and became homeless for the upteenth time in Tucson in December. Not able to sleep one the street terrible things happened and shelters pushing their religious thought are not the answer. Large tents with at least outhouses certainly would help. These could be in a corner of a large park with no problem. It dose take time to save for and find an affordable roof. And having to pay a large sum for a shelter bunk certainly made that saving more difficult.

  • RickE.

    Being visibly poor will always be illegal. It makes the comfortable people feel uncomfortable!

  • Apex predator

    people.. the system is set up for you to fail..its rigged once this is understood and accepted..the real fight can begin