The Last Trailer Park

Trailer parks. Beyond the stigma and the stereotypes, for families who can’t afford a traditional home, they can be a lifeline worth fighting for. That’s why neighbors from a Long Island trailer park in Nassau County recently banded together to stave off eviction and save their homes. Their struggle is the subject of a Newsday documentary, The Last Trailer Park. As part of our ongoing initiative, “Chasing the Dream: Poverty and Opportunity in America,” we take a look at the film and speak with its producer. We also delve into an epidemic impacting thousands of Americans across the Tri-State every year: eviction. Harvard University professor Matthew Desmond gives us a firsthand look at the harsh realities of living in a trailer park. The sociologist made one his home for about half a year and watched as families were evicted and forced into shelters. Desmond took thousands of pages of notes as he chronicled their stories. That research has been called “the most comprehensive, detailed data on American urban poverty, housing and eviction” and is now the foundation of his book Evicted: Poverty and Profit in the American City.