(NewsReady.com) – President Joe Biden is trying to focus on the economy as he fights to get re-elected. For some reason, he seems to think the US is in great financial shape, and people should vote for him because of that. Unfortunately for him, the record number of homeless people on America’s streets tells a different story.
Last year, homelessness in the US reached a new record high as the cost of living crisis left many struggling to pay mortgages or rent. The spike saw homelessness rise by a shocking 12% over 2022 figures, with 653,104 Americans spending at least one night without a home. Federal government research also found that poverty and food insecurity are on the rise, which isn’t exactly a sign of a healthy economy, but homelessness is the real worry.
Obviously, just being homeless is bad enough, but it also puts people at an increased risk of violent crime and even leads many to become criminals themselves. It isn’t just bad for its victims. Homelessness increases crime, costs taxpayers a lot of money, and reduces quality of life.
San Francisco is one of the worst-affected cities because homeless people from all over the country head there for its mild climate, which makes sleeping rough in the winter less dangerous. The consequence is that the city center is blighted by large, crime-riddled homeless camps, and many neighborhoods are awash in rough sleepers, many of them with mental health or substance abuse issues. California alone spent $4.7 billion dealing with homelessness last year, and that’s barely scratching the surface.
We can’t afford to provide all the services our growing army of homeless people need, so the solution has to be to prevent people from becoming homeless in the first place. It doesn’t look like the current administration’s economic policies are doing that because, between 2022 and 2023, an additional 70,650 Americans found themselves living on the streets. When that’s happening in the world’s richest country, something has gone badly wrong.
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