HOMELESSNESS AND POVERTY
|Reaching Out to the Homeless
More details to follow on our funding of a homeless campaign which will include a documentary and assistance to the homeless.
----- Original Message -----
From: INCODA Management
Sent: Monday, June 29, 2015 7:30 PM
We humbly thank you and your Organization for the generous contribution to our Reaching Out to the Homeless campaign. We are honored to help our homeless throughout the communities and in the nation by doing our part at improving and enriching their lives.
We will keep everyone posted with updates throughout. May our Heavenly Father continue to bless and protect your Organization and it's members as you share information and empower our people with knowledge.
Thank you again for your generous support towards helping us help our homeless.
| Reaching Out to the Homeless Documentary VIDEO
|BATCH OF NEW 500 MILLION DOLLAR NOTES FOR THE HOMELESS
| Walt homeless on the streets of San Jose VIDEO
|Hawaii politician gets beaten by homeless people years after destroying their belongings with sledgehammer
FULL ARTICLE HERE
This politician's hard-hitting homelessness plan seems to have hit him back.
Hawaii state Rep. Tom Brower (D.-Ala Moana, Waikiki), is infamous for smashing homeless peoples’ possessions with a sledgehammer in 2013, allegedly was assaulted by a homeless horde as he filmed them outside a children's museum Monday afternoon.
“They ganged up on one man and he was taken to the hospital,” Department of Public Safety Toni Schwartz told the Honolulu Star-Advertiser, not directly naming Brower.
Brower was filming a homeless encampment near the Children’s Discovery Center museum, and the people there asked him to stop, the paper reported. They then allegedly stole his camera and assaulted him, punching him repeatedly and leaving him with a concussion and two swollen eyes.
The pummeled pol was treated and released from a trauma hospital, Hawaii News Now reported. His beatdown is being investigated as a felony assault.
Brower made mainland headlines in 2013 when he started literally taking a sledgehammer to Hawaii’s homelessness problem.
With the tool in hand, he roamed the streets of the Aloha State, which has one of the U.S.'s highest homelessness rates, and smashed the shopping carts and debris left behind by the less fortunate.
Brower, who has represented his district since 2006, told local media he considered that crusade a more “practical” approach to clean streets than attempting to pass laws.
Several weeks and dozens of destroyed carts later, he let the hammer fall.
“The point that I was trying to make has been made,” he told the Star-Advertiser at the time. “It’s time to put down the sledgehammer.”
Daily News calls and emails to Brower were not immediately returned.
| My Homelessness: The misery of life on the streets of London VIDEO
| Hollywood actress helps the homeless VIDEO
|Private landlords get £9billion a year to house people with housing benefits
Landlords are exploiting legal loopholes to make millions off housing benefits while providing sub-standard and dangerous accommodation, an investigation has revealed.
FULL ARTICLE HERE
More than 200 individual landlords across the country have collected more than £1million each in housing benefits over the last three years, Monday’s Dispatches will show.
The programme, airing on Channel 4, investigates how private landlords are now the fastest growing provider of accommodation for housing benefit tenants, receiving £9billion a year from public funds.
Although many landlords provide good homes, the investigation finds that some are still collecting money from the taxpayer while placing people in dangerous accommodation.
One scheme exploited by landlords in London sees them convert hundreds of houses into properties containing multiple tiny units, each with a small shower room and basic cooking facilities.
This means that they can claim a higher rate of housing benefit than if they were renting out a fully shared property.
Housing Benefit Millionaires, which airs at 8pm, examines two properties in Brent, North London, and discovers that one letting agent is collecting nearly £70,000 per year and another nearly £80,000 per year in housing benefit.
One of these agents is believed to have almost 100 of these properties across the capital, earning them upwards of £2million from the taxpayer over the last three years.
In an attempt to combat the housing crisis, some councils are also offering private landlords financial incentives to rent their properties to people on housing benefits.
The Dispatches team secretly filmed one letting agent revealing that they receive between £800 and £1000 from local authorities to find rooms for housing benefit tenants.
Dr Victoria Cooper, lecturer in Social Policy at the Open University, tells the programme: ‘Approximately 40 per cent of the housing benefit budget is spent on the private rented sector.
‘What we’re seeing is a redistribution of wealth and while public funds were previously spent within social housing and then used to reinvest to expand that social housing, this is no longer the case.
‘With the private rented sector the money isn’t redistributed and it simply goes into the pockets of private landlords.’
A group of London councils including Greenwich, Hackney, Haringey, Lambeth, Lewisham and Southwark have become increasingly concerned about the loophole and have received funds from central government to investigate further.
The consortium plan to inspect 1,500 letting units that attract more than £15m a year in housing benefit.
Lawyers acting for the agents told Dispatches: ‘Our companies manage a number of properties in London and across the UK.
‘Each one is subject to the regulation of the appropriate local council, is inspected by them and subjected to independent certification generally. We have an excellent working relationship with each council.’
They said they reject all the allegations and would ‘continue to work with local authorities to provide much needed accommodation’.
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| Homeless protest in Nottingham over Christmas VIDEO
The usual lies spouted by councils
|Three homeless people SUE New York City claiming cops threw out birth certificates
Three homeless people have filed papers to sue New York City, saying police wrongly tossed a birth certificate, Social Security cards and priceless family photos into a dump truck.
FULL ARTICLE HERE
Jesus Morales and two others say they were sleeping in outside a school in Manhattan at about 5am on October 2 when police arrived, woke them, told them to move and tossed their stuff.
Some said they were kicked and shoved by the officers.
'They grabbed my clothes and threw it all in the garbage truck,' Morales, 42, said in Spanish on Monday at a news conference, attended by about a dozen homeless New Yorkers, to announce notice of the claim.
Morales said he's been homeless nearly 16 years.
'I can't even afford a room,' he said. 'We are many, and we don't have money to live here.'
The notice of claim, the first step in filing a lawsuit against the city, was prepared by the New York Civil Liberties Union after they obtained security footage of the night through a Freedom of Information Law request.
Attorney Alexis Karteron said their belongings weren't worth much, 'but the emotional cost is priceless'.
A spokeswoman for the mayor said the encounter between the homeless and police involved illegal trespassing on school grounds.
'That said, we will review our protocols concerning the seizure and disposition of personal property to ensure that it can be reclaimed by its rightful owners,' spokeswoman Karen Hinton said.
Mayor Bill de Blasio said on Monday that the city has had success in persuading some who live in the camps to accept city services.
'Think about the encampments - settlements of people living out in the open or living under a railroad tunnel. Sleeping in the exposed air, often drug dens. This was not an acceptable way of life for those people,' he said.
'We're not going to tolerate it - for them, let alone for the communities around them. What a horrible message it sends about quality of life.'
But homeless New Yorkers and advocates said they were concerned the mayor's approach is too aggressive. Linda Lewis of Picture the Homeless questioned what would happen if all 55,000 homeless citizens were sheltered.
'Then what? There isn't enough housing for them - where do they go after shelter?' she asked.
Some homeless said they preferred the streets to shelters, where they felt unsafe. An audit by the comptroller's office found too few employees oversee the nonprofit organizations that operate shelters.
Meanwhile, about 50 outreach workers from three nonprofit groups canvassed Monday as part of the city's Home Stat outreach program.
Allison McCullough of the Goddard Riverside Community Center interacted with about 10 people by midday, and one conversation was cut short when police arrested a man on an assault charge. She said connecting on the street is a challenge.
'People aren't always forthcoming,' she said. 'It can take months. It can take years.'
She spoke with 30-year-old William Hardnet, who has been homeless since he was laid off from a cooking job at an Atlantic City casino six years ago.
'I like their program so much more because they actually come out and interact with the homeless,' he said. 'It shows that it's coming from the heart.'
He said he prefers to sleep in a convenience store doorway than to go to a shelter. Still, he said, he plans to work with McCullough.
'I would like for someone to come with me to see how it's set up,' he said. 'I'm definitely trying to get inside this winter.'
| Filipino children driven to the streets by crushing poverty VIDEO
|The homeless are a sign of a society that doesn’t care
FULL ARTICLE HERE
As the crowds poured out of the spell-binding Benjamin Clementine gig at St John’s Church in Hackney on Monday night, I noticed something in the corner of the churchyard. Or rather, I noticed someone, wrapped in a sleeping bag, lying on a few strips of cardboard, turning their body away from the cold. Churches may be struggling for congregations but they’re still in demand as music venues and crisis shelters, it seems.
London has always drawn people in for music, money and warmth — but you’re rarely far from a reminder of how it can spit them out too. This particular rough sleeper was especially poignant in the light of Clementine’s performance.
His songs tell of an unloved boy from Edmonton who threw his mobile phone in a bin because he couldn’t imagine anyone caring and ran away to Paris where he found his voice singing out in the Metro. After he won the Mercury Music Prize last month, that story has gained an air of inevitability, as stories often do when they’re written.
But it makes me wonder how many voices go unheard through sheer bad luck. How many others might have, or could have, or could still, if we only listened out for them.
What is certain is that the numbers of people sleeping rough keeps rising. The homelessness charity Crisis points to a 16 per cent increase in London this year, while according to Government data, there has been a 55 per cent increase nationwide since 2010. Some charities are so short of beds that they are giving out bus tickets and recommending night bus routes.
In London, we’re becoming inured to sights that we would have recently found shocking. Not since the grim days of Cardboard City — the notorious Thatcher-era shanty town underneath the Waterloo roundabout — has the problem been so visible. (If Labour can’t be trusted with the economy, the obvious counter is that the Conservatives can’t be trusted with society.)
And this is without factoring the more insidious problem of hidden homelessness: the estimated 400,000 people who are currently in hostels, B&Bs, squats and friend’s homes, conveniently ushered away from the official statistics. As Crisis warns, it’s rarely one problem that pushes people out onto the streets — there have usually been a series of problems.
I got a sense of this when I finally got talking to one of the guys who sleeps on my street. I came home to find him on my doorstep having a beer. I was a little irritated at first, since I’m often kicking away half-empty cans in the morning. “Have you ever noticed any litter around where we sit?” Someone gave him the can, he said, and if he drank it on the main street, he’d just get abuse. As it was, he had to contend with enough idiots kicking him, or pissing on his sleeping bag, or stealing his few belongings.
His story was litany of bad luck. His partner had been sectioned, leaving him to bring up their children alone. He was a skilled tradesman but he’d suffered health issues of his own. He had spent the past two years trying to gain employment but couldn’t without an address. “I’m sorry to keep going on, we don’t speak to a lot of people, so when we do it all comes out,” he said.
These cases aren’t inevitable. They’re an indictment of a society. And for what it’s worth, when I came out the next morning, the street was immaculate.
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|Youth homelessness figure eight times higher than tory filth government admits
136,000 young people aged between 16 and 24 in England and Wales sought emergency housing in the past year
FULL ARTICLE HERE
The full extent of youth homelessness is more than eight times higher than the Government admits, according to a new report.
Some 136,000 young people aged between 16 and 24 in England and Wales sought emergency housing in the past year. The figure is based on an analysis by the Centrepoint charity of 275 Freedom of Information responses from local authorities. In stark contrast, only 16,000 young people were officially classed as “statutory homeless” – which would mean councils had a legal duty to house them – according to the report.
Worryingly, some 30,000 of those seeking help were turned away with little if any support. And as many as 90,000 were only offered support such as family mediation, to help them stay at home, or debt advice. This means the vast majority of those going for help are not getting the full assistance they’d be entitled to if they were officially accepted as being homeless.
“The most alarming aspect to these findings is that it is very likely they are a significant underestimate – many of the local authorities where youth homelessness is most prevalent did not respond to our Freedom of Information requests,” said Gaia Marcus, who runs Centrepoint’s youth homelessness databank.
Failures to assess the majority of young people in need of help mean some of the most vulnerable could miss out on the help to which they could be legally entitled, leaving them at risk, campaigners warn.
Only 40 per cent of young people in England were given an assessment to determine their eligibility for emergency housing in 2014, while in Wales fewer than two-thirds (60 per cent) were assessed.
The most alarming aspect to these findings is that it is very likely they are a significant underestimate
Gaia Marcus, Centrepoint
“A timely intervention in the lives of homeless young people enables them to achieve their potential in education, training or work. Unfortunately, too many young people are being failed at the first opportunity. It’s critical that central government provides sufficient funding to meet the true level of need,” said Ms Marcus.
“Each young person facing homelessness deserves to be given a thorough assessment to determine the help they need.
“No young person should be abandoned to dangerous situations at home or on the street.”
The Government needs to change the way it reports homelessness figures; all young people going for help should be assessed for their needs; and more funding is needed to enable councils to deal with the problem, says the report.
This comes amid warnings of a growing housing crisis. It emerged last month that homelessness has risen 40 per cent in five years, with more than 55,000 households accepted as homeless by their local council last year, according to the latest official statistics. The number of homeless families living in temporary accommodation in England stands at 50,750, the highest since 2008. Greg Clark, the Communities Secretary, warned in July that young people are being “exiled” from their local areas to “find a home that they can afford”.
In a statement, a government spokesman dismissed the report’s findings: “Centrepoint’s analysis is misleading and based on anecdotal evidence.” However, Matt Downie, director of policy at the Crisis homelessness charity, commented: “Our own research shows that when homeless people go to their council for help, all too often they are turned away to sleep on the streets.”
Peter Box, the Local Government Association’s housing spokesman, warned: “A chronic shortage of affordable housing and 40 per cent cuts to council budgets over the past five years means councils are facing real difficulties in finding emergency care for all homeless people.”
And Roger Harding, director of policy at Shelter, added: “It’s utterly shocking that any young person with nowhere to go would be turned away when they ask for help. But, sadly, our deepening housing crisis means this is becoming all too common.”