Wednesday, July 8, 2009

"Homeless" Applies to More People (Especially Children) Than You Think

At PathWays PA, we often talk about the Self-Sufficiency Standard, a report that looks at the income families need to make ends meet in every county based on family size and composition. When people don't earn the income they need, they may cut corners by buying unhealthy food or skipping their medication. They may go without heat or electricity.

They may become homeless.

But homeless doesn't necessarily mean living on the streets or in a shelter. "Homeless" can also mean families living with relatives or friends due to a lack of housing, families living in transitional housing, and much more. This is especially important to families with children in school, since (as long as distance isn't a factor) homeless families can choose between their new school district and the "district of origin" when it comes to registering their children.

An article in The New York Times notes that across the county, summer is when many families become homeless, since they do not want to take their children out of school before the year concludes if they can help it. Please spread the word to families that when the school year returns, their children may be able to return to their old school as well.

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