2020 has been one of the worst years in modern history across the world. Financially it could be sending many over the edge but is homelessness a bigger problem yet?
Many countries are experiencing some of the worst times financially because of the COVID19 crisis.
In the USA alone there has been some of the worst unemployment for decades due to the virus and lockdown measures that lasted months.
Many small to medium-sized companies have had to make hundreds of staff redundant while others have gone into liquidation.
Where does this leave the average worker?
It’s an incredibly worrying and uncertain time which could easily get worse for many if certain States or the whole of the US goes back into lockdown.
One recent example is a lady from California who has a 10-month-old daughter and has been reaching out on social media for help as she is currently facing homelessness.
She is currently staying in one room at her husband’s Aunt’s house without her husband as the Aunt doesn’t like men staying there. Her husband is living with his parents.
We will call the lady Denise for now so that identities can be protected. Denise mentioned that she would love to go to work but can’t leave her 10-month-old child due to separation anxiety.
Living in one room of another person’s house is not easy and can be challenging for both parties. The Aunt’s autistic daughter has been very difficult to Denise and she has been submitted to continuous bullying and name-calling. This has made living their complete hell for Denise and not easy for the child.
The whole situation with the current crisis, financial problems, and living where she is now has taken a huge toll on her mental health and sent Denise into a spiral of depression.
If she leaves her current accommodation then she’ll be homeless or she thinks she will be. Her mental health has deteriorated so much that Denise has hardly been eating which is causing more issues with her child as they are very sensitive to moods and mental states. Homelessness is an unfortunate reality she is facing.
With so much going on at her husband’s Aunt’s house and the autistic child bullying Denise, she’s now been told that she needs to leave and given a 28-day notice. Denise has nowhere to go and no friends to support her.
She has both parents that want nothing to do with her current situation and are not willing to help her at all.
It’s shocking how people, including some parents, have no empathy for their own children and even grandchildren. How has the human race come to this?
Denise has thought about a shelter for her and her child but she is very nervous and scared about catching the virus.
She currently lives in Southern California. The homeless rate in California is extremely high and was at 151,000 towards the end of 2019.
The homelessness rate in 2020 will be much higher due to the current crisis and unemployment.
The US has the section 8 program which allows tenants to rent property from landlords at a reduced affordable rate. The rent is also subsidized so this can be a good option for low-income tenants.
You can apply for a housing voucher here Housing Choice Voucher Program Section 8 | HUD.gov / U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD)
This is also a very handy website on affordable housing https://affordablehousingonline.com/open-section-8-waiting-lists/California
You can also get tons of help out there with the right advice. If you are having trouble paying energy bills then you can get help with this too.
The LIHEAP (Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program) is designed to help those on low incomes who are having trouble paying energy bills.
You can find out more information here https://www.acf.hhs.gov/ocs/programs/liheap/about
The government also has a very handy website that allows you to check which benefits you are entitled to.
It’s worth checking as you may be entitled to help with housing and bills. The website is here https://www.benefits.gov/benefit-finder
If you are having trouble financially or if you know someone who is on the brink financially then reach out to us on the comments section and we’ll do all we can to help with more advice and resources.
If you you are anyone you know is having trouble financially then leave a comment below.