Week of 6.26.09
Homes for the Homeless?What to do with foreclosed houses—How about letting homeless families move in? An innovative idea that's also illegal.
It appears that your computer does not have the Flash Player required to view NOW videos. Visit Adobe to download and install the latest version of the Flash Player.American streets are littered with foreclosed houses, but one daring advocate says these homes shouldn't go to waste. He encourages and facilitates homeless squatting. It's an idea that addresses two issues at once - homelessness and foreclosed homes—and it's also illegal.
This week, NOW travels to Miami to meet with Max Rameau, an advocate for the homeless. Rameau's organization, Take Back the Land, identifies empty homes that are still livable, and tries to find responsible families willing to take the enormous legal risks of moving in.
Rameau, who considers his mission an act of civil disobedience, says it's immoral to keep homes vacant while there are human beings living on the street. But while these squatters have morality in their hearts, they don't have the law on their side.
With the faltering economy separating so many people from their homes, what's society's responsibility to those short on shelter?
Take Back the Land
U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development
In the News
CNN: Homeless woman's plea to Obama draws flood of support
The Los Angeles Times: Homeless numbers 'alarming'
The National: US shelters see spike in families left out on street
NY Daily News: Homeless flock to Brooklyn luxury condo in hopes of scoring shelter
NPR: Homeless Advocate Goes High Tech
USA Today: Economic casualties pile into tent cities
WHRRL: Hardly Normal is at Nickelsville in Seattle a picture tour of a tent city for Seattle's homeless.
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|Homes for the Homeless?
Middle Class and Newly Homeless
In Your State: Housing Help
Facts & Figures: The Homeless
King of the Cans
Producer's Notebook: Finding Footie
Urgent Insight: The Economy
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