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How our cities are preventing healthy sleep habits

Written by admin on . Posted in Awareness, Civil Rights, Criminalization

7 ways to help the homeless sleep safeCollege students pulling all nighters to write a paper, newborn babies keeping their parents up at all hours, breathing disorders, your partner’s snoring, a good book, stress – there are any number of things that keep housed folks up at night. There is loads of research that shows that Americans are terrible at getting enough sleep. But are we all aware that we can add our cities’ own bad policy to the list of things keeping us from a good nights rest?

March 6-13th marks National Sleep Awareness Week, and while many are learning about powering down their devices before bed or other relaxation techniques, there are thousands of Americans who are being all but sleep-deprived by anti-camping bans and ordinances disallowing sitting or lying in public places.

Homelessness is at crisis levels, and there is simply not enough shelter space for the shear number of people who have lost permanent housing. This past August, the US Department of Justice suggested public camping bans could be unconstitutional, saying, “Criminally prosecuting those individuals for something as innocent as sleeping, when they have no safe, legal place to go, violates their constitutional rights.”

Homelessness is tough in so many ways, but we don’t always realize the critical role sleep plays in helping our neighbors get back on their feet. It has been well documented that not having your own bed in which you can relax, feel safe and rest can be damaging to one’s health. Watch this video from our partner Denver Homeless Out Loud, where a young woman details how the lack of sleep has affected her since she became homeless.

Its high time we stopped punishing our neighbors for losing their home and being down on their luck, and started to invest again in affordable housing. Help us promote #SafeSleep and the #Right2Rest during National Sleep Awareness Week!

Message to the Presidential Candidates

Written by Annie Leomporra on . Posted in Advocacy, Awareness, Civil Rights, Community Organizing, Criminalization, Education, Food Sharing, Outreach, Policy Advocacy, Prevention, Public Education, Tent Cities, Violence Against the Homeless

An open letter to the candidates running for the office of the President of the United States:

We invite you to take this opportunity to reach nearly 15% of the voting public. On Wednesday, February 17th from 7:00 pm eastern time through 9:00 am on Thursday, February 18th, we hope that you will participate in the 18th annual Homeless Marathon (news.homelessnessmarathon.org/).

There are anywhere between 500,000 and 3.5 million people who will experience homelessness in the United States this year. Not to mention the almost 50 million Americans who are struggling to make ends meet, and countless more who are just one paycheck away from losing their homes!

The Homeless Marathon gives you a chance to reach thousands of these homeless and low-income voters who are looking for solutions at the Federal level. The Marathon will be broadcast on almost 100 radio stations in 40 states, online and abroad.

You are also welcome to join a rally in Lafayette Park, in front of you potential future home, the White House, on Thursday, February 18th at 8am. The producers of the Homeless Marathon will be holding a straw poll throughout the broadcast, and will be announcing the (unofficial) president that homeless and low-income voters across the country have chosen.

The Homeless Marathon is America’s only national broadcast focusing on homelessness and poverty. Please take the time to participate in this once in a life time opportunity to share your policy objects with the nation on homelessness and poverty. Your message will be shared all around the country to the most vulnerable population, people experiencing homelessness. As you know, every vote counts and your message and policies can save thousands possibly millions of lives.

For more information please visit: news.homelessnessmarathon.org or www.nationalhomeless.org.
Thank you for your attention to the needs of all Americans!

Sincerely,

The National Coalition for the Homeless

 

Bad weather resources and 5 Tips for Helping

Written by admin on . Posted in Uncategorized

El Niño rains in California, blizzard conditions in the northeast, mother nature seems to be reminding us that outdoors is no place for humans to live.

If you are in need of shelter, or if you see someone needing assistance, here are some tips:

  • If you or someone else appears to be in a dangerous situation, do not hesitate to call 911. 
  • In some cases, it will be safer for people to remain in their outdoor encampments. Be sure you have or help folks with getting enough warm clothing and bedding.
  • Be courteous! Treat folks with respect and compassion!
  • Arm yourself with warm cloths (hats, gloves, etc), food or food vouchers, and most importantly, information about local emergency shelters and hotlines. See below!
  • There is generally not enough shelter beds for the number of people experiencing homelessness, most cities will have some time of warming center or overflow shelter, but your city may not.

We have a larger list of local resources in our Directory, or see below a quick list of emergency hotlines in each state (if you do not see your city, a good rule of thumb is to contact your city or county government, or find your local Continuum of Care):

Phoenix, AZ 602-263-8900
Los Angeles, CA 1-800-548-6047
San Diego, CA Dial 211
San Jose, CA 408-510-7600
San Francisco, CA Dial 311
Denver, CO Dial 211
Washington, DC 1-800-535-7252
Jacksonville, FL Dial 211
Atlanta, GA Dial 311
Chicago, IL Dial 311
Indianapolis, IN Dial 311
Louisville, KY Dial 311
Boston, MA Dial 311
Baltimore, MD 410-433-8145
Detroit, MI Dial 211
Minneapolis, MN 612-348-4111
Kansas City, MO 816-474-4599
Charlotte, NC 704-432-7233
Omaha, NE Dial 311
New York, NY Dial 311
Las Vegas, NV 702-828-1556
Columbus, OH 1-888-474-3587
Oklahoma City, OK 405-415-8410
Portland, OR Dial 211
Philadelphia, PA Dial 311
Memphis, TN 901-260-4663
Nashville, TN 615-880-2526
Austin, TX Dial 311
Dallas, TX 214-428-4242
El Paso, TX 915-546-8150
Fort Worth, TX 817-810-9797
Houston, TX Dial 211
San Antonio, TX Dial 311
Seattle, WA Dial 211
Milwaukee, WI Dial 211

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