Homeless Criminalization

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Is The Criminalization of The Homeless Getting Worse in Present Day Conditions?

Is the criminalization of the homeless getting worse in present day conditions? Homelessness in the United States dates back to the founding of our country in the 18th century, and continues to exist today. Not having a home is an issue that dates back as far as when the first settlers arrived. Back then, what made up most of the population of the homeless were the slaves or the very poor. Today the homeless have much more of a struggle in comparison to the past for many reasons such as being kicked out of areas; because of them having no choice but to “loiter” due to not having a place to sleep for the night. The homeless were allowed to live
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As media shines more light on the issue of police brutality on the African Americans it fails to do so with the homeless. A transcript from National Public radio talked about why some deaths or incidents do get national coverage and others do not is because it has to do with public sympathy. The rise of the growing racial tensions with the police and the African Americans have peeked more of the attention of the public in comparison to the problem of the criminalization of the homeless. A reason for this attention is also because the African American community has more voice and attention than the homeless, via social media, etc. It has been an issue that the police are the main perpetrators on the criminalization of the homeless as stated by Ann Marie Staudenmaier who is a staff attorney for the Washington legal Clinic for the homeless. In L.A. there have been reports of the police criminalizing the homeless for minor offenses, such as sleeping on the beaches as stated by L.A. Times the victim was then handcuffed and then taken to jail. Statistics from L.A. Times show that arrests of homeless people by LAPD were up by thirty percent. Another example of criminalization is when the homeless sleep in their own cars in public areas, they will get physically removed from their car if they are not able to flee elsewhere. If…show more content…
The low toleration for the homeless American society has is the root of the problem due to it alienating them from our society when in reality they are normal people. Media and society tells us that the homeless are dirty, unsafe and are not to be trusted. Truthfully this mentality or idea we have fixed in our brains is the main cause for their criminalization. A reason for their criminalization is because of their status in our society and how we look down on them for it , mentioned by The Guardian. For example businesses will have a homeless person physically removed for reasons such as creating an unsafe business environment or for other reasons such as being dirty or even loitering. An article from The Age talks about how the sight of the homeless camped in the city of Melbourne is damaging their tourism reputation; is what residents and business operators say, who have demanded the homeless be moved from public view. Our society is not completely cold towards the homeless as there are many organizations and movements that strive to better their livelihoods. However, what is mainly done to better their lives is not enough as the issue is of a large scale. Society mainly gives the homeless a “bad” image as shown by their harsh treatment from the police and the public. This “bad” image can be dated back

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