Housing Day was created to address this problem all around the globe. According to a 2008 study, there are 643,000 homeless Americans in the US and 200,000 in Canada. Homelessness is also viewed as a crime in many places. Housing Day aims to change this perception and provide shelter for people who are homeless.
Housing Day was established in 1998 as a way to recognize homelessness as a national catastrophe. Mayors of Canada’s largest cities, including Mel Lastman from Toronto, adopted a declaration from the Toronto Disaster Relief Committee. This declared homelessness as a national crisis and threat to Canada. Every Canadian, like every other person on the planet, has the right to a safe place.
It is believed that most homeless people are simply not interested in working. However, statistics have proven this to be false. 25% of the homeless in the US are people who have a mental illness. 13% of the homeless are people fleeing domestic violence and choosing to live on the streets over living with their abusers.
Tragically, only 12% are veterans of the armed forces. They are often abandoned by society once they have left active duty. Even worse, 238,000 people who live on streets are family members, many of which live together on the street or in areas where others don’t have homes, including shelters.
When you get up each morning, you should look at your roof and be grateful for the warmth of your home. You can then look around your community to see how homelessness affects you. It may surprise you to discover that even smaller communities have people who sleep on the streets or in shelters. You can look into the organizations in your area on Housing Day to see what you could do to help your community.