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Forum Post: State's student homeless population doubles

Posted 6 years ago on Jan. 23, 2012, 11:20 a.m. EST by GirlFriday (17435)
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"It has been really hard," said Ryan, a junior at Wilde Lake High School in Columbia. "I look at it like a detention I have to do every day, even though I didn't do anything wrong."

Ryan's experience is becoming increasingly common. The number of homeless students in Maryland has more than doubled in the past five years, rising from 6,721 to 14,117 last school year, according to the Maryland State Department of Education.

The largest increases in homeless populations are notable for where they are occurring: in the suburban rings around cities. Anne Arundel County has seen a 231 percent increase in homeless students since 2005, Baltimore County a 140 percent increase and Howard County a 150 percent increase. The increase in Baltimore City, which still has the largest number of homeless students, was 75 percent.

Upper-middle-class families who once lived in $500,000 houses are telling school officials that they have lost their homes. In one case, school officials said, a family lived in the woods after losing their place. And many are temporarily living with family or friends, moving from house to house. http://articles.baltimoresun.com/2012-01-21/news/bs-md-homeless-students-20120106_1_homeless-students-barbara-duffield-homeless-children



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[-] 3 points by HitGirl (2263) 6 years ago

The capitalists think this is just fine. They only want to use the workers they need to earn money most efficiently. The system has no conscience, no loyalty to country, no sense of social justice. Their insouciance will cause these children lasting damage. And all the while they will laugh and demand tax breaks and less government. This is why it is unacceptable. It reduces human beings to miserable chattel and robs this country of its future and its greatness and that is why it has to end. And why we have to unite to end it.

[+] -5 points by GirlFriday (17435) 6 years ago

I agree.

[-] 2 points by buphiloman (840) 6 years ago

Rental rates should be federally controlled and rent should be federally subsidized, as should health care and and basic food staples. This is done in Germany, France, the UK, Sweden, Norway, and many other countries. America is laughably behind-the-curve when it comes to ensuring the basic needs of its people. What a shame. And what a catastrophe waiting to happen.

[+] -6 points by GirlFriday (17435) 6 years ago

I agree. There was a time that I thought (recently) that it was possible for rental rates not to be federally controlled. However, my position has changed and I think that it is imperative that they are federally controlled and subsidized. There is no reason for us to be "behind the curve".

[-] 1 points by beautifulworld (22863) 6 years ago

Good for Maryland for keeping track of this. It seems like some states are more interested in their homeless than others.

How can people not care about this and not see the link to low wages:

"According to one study, the income needed for a two-bedroom apartment here is $24.43 per hour, or more than three times the minimum wage."


[-] 0 points by ronjj (-241) 6 years ago

Hey - good morning.

This is all so complicated due to the different variables. If you have to make over $50,000 where you live just to afford a two-bedroom apartment what all is determining this. Is it the cost of land, construction costs, wages, demand for housing, prestige, overpriced housing, control by the elite.

I would like to see more analysis of these problems. If the minimum wage was set at $24.43 per hour, would that solve anything or merely see a great increase in rental rates for everyone.

There is such a difference in problems in larger city areas as compared to the area I live in that things just don't always compute. Our housing is quite a bit less but one person working minimum could not afford an apartment and with two working minimum it would not be a very good apartment and would be in a less than desirable area.

[-] 1 points by beautifulworld (22863) 6 years ago

Hi. It's afternoon for me. It is complicated, but the fact that wages have not kept pace with living expenses is not complicated and some genius must figure this out so that this nation can get on with its business.

[-] 0 points by ronjj (-241) 6 years ago

I would agree. However, I also think that we have a lot of "hot spot buildup" that we often overlook. Of course one of then involves wages, but I think that another involves inflation which would wipe out everything that we make in the way of progress towards those higher wages. If this all breaks at once, we are in for a very rough ride.

[-] 1 points by beautifulworld (22863) 6 years ago

Seems like an argument against raising wages. You have to have your low wages or else we'll have inflation. Is that what you're saying? Corporations have record profits right now. Why can't they pay workers more and make due with a bit less profit. I don't get it. I'm all ears, though, if you know....

[-] 1 points by Mooks (1985) 6 years ago

They don't do it because they are greedy and want to maximize profit for their shareholders.

An increase in wages can indeed lead to higher prices like ronjj mentioned though, thus making those increases less significant. If people have more money to spend, the demand for certain items goes up. An increase in demand, especially one not met with a increase in supply, will cause the price of an item to rise.

[-] 1 points by beautifulworld (22863) 6 years ago

Thanks, Mooks. That's what I was thinking. I just wanted him to admit it or tell my why it's not plain greed.

[-] 0 points by ronjj (-241) 6 years ago

No not at all. Wages should be in balance with costs, etc. All that I am saying is that there is a correlation between actions in one part of the economy and reactions in other parts of that economy. This has become even more pronounced with the expansion of local economies into global ones. Note:

  1. Profits do not belong to the employees any more than losses belong to the employees. Businesses do not operate on a one year plan though we tend to see profits or losses as a one-year happening.

  2. In order to assess the status of any business relative to profits and losses, it is necessary to look at more than one year of operations. At lease five and perhaps ten years are required. If big oil is making great profits this year, I would want to know how they did over the past five-ten years in order to determine what is really happening.

  3. Wages tend to be a permanent investment just like a building or other asset. A business has to be pretty sound to give raises across the board - ill founded actions, simply result in layoffs next year as the only way to offset higher wages this year if the economy will not continue to support that decision.

I am not providing an argument against raising wages. I am merely stating that in addition to calling for higher wages, a lot of other factors must be considered and perhaps "called for" along with it.

[-] 1 points by beautifulworld (22863) 6 years ago

Okay. That's interesting. But, corporate profits are at an all time high. They've been increasing regularly, not decreasing, right?

[-] 0 points by ronjj (-241) 6 years ago

I believe that you are correct regarding corporate profits, but is it not true that wages, costs of transporation, costs of production, and all other measures are also at an all time high. Look at your auto insurance and health insurance bills.

Have you or anyone else put this into an understandable context which compares all aspects of the source of these profits and shown that the entire machine of business is out of "whack".

Are the corporate profits a direct results of business owners paying a lower wage today. Perhaps those profits are derived from cost savings in business operations, such as out-sourceing, lower costs of raw materials, higher wholesale costs, cutting the heating bill for the corporate offices, etc.

Just saying once again, that any analysis of such a complex problem requires some complex understanding and analysis before a decision has validity.

When I get a little time, I will do some corporate profit-loss research and see what the trend is and over how many years that trend has progressed.

I have rental property. We purchased that property in 1975 and for 12 years, we did not show a profit and had to put money from our salaries into paying the mortgage(S) and upkeep on that property while our rent remained competetive. After that period, we broke even or showed a small profit for the next ten years. Today, I can show a pretty reasonable profit. Taken as a single year - say 2011 - I would be accused of price goughing. Just an example.

[-] 1 points by beautifulworld (22863) 6 years ago

Fair enough. But, clearly wages are declining. No one in their right mind would argue that wages are increasing. I'm sure profits are the result of many things, the hard labor of working Americans included, no doubt. Regardless of why corporations have profits, the economy should work for the benefit of the people not vice versa.

[-] 0 points by ronjj (-241) 6 years ago

Wise post. Thanks. But here again, as a business person, my selling prices are also declining. I simply cannot realize the fair markup that I saw a few years ago, have had to cut prices to remain competitive, all the while paying a surcharge of transportation of good for resale to my place of business, covering increased costs for insurance etc.

One of the few advantages to the person in business today is the reduced cost of capital to continue in business. Money is cheaper to borrow and in some cases, real property is cheaper. For many small businessmen-women, the hard labor of working Americans has been absorbed by the owners-managers who are working longer hours and doing more of the actual work within the business. This is very true of my small business, where my son-in-law has taken over and the only person working and hase to rely upon his wife and children to help out. Ten years ago, that same business had one full time and two part time employees in addition to the owner and his wife. The profit is simply not there to continue with that number of workers such as it was. I think that we are seeing this more and more in our smaller business ventures and I would also guess in the larger ones too where the number of service personnel has been greatly reduced.

[-] 1 points by beautifulworld (22863) 6 years ago

Yes. I'm not sure what exactly is going on with all of that but I think it has more to do with the shenanigans of the big corporations and their effects on all of us, including small businesses. Even people who work for these big corporations are doing the jobs of two people these days. They lay people off and then tell the people who still have jobs - okay, now you get to do his job, too. How to explain this? I'm not sure, but I do think greed has something to do with it. I'm talking about greed from the very top of the 1% and big corporations.

[-] 0 points by ronjj (-241) 6 years ago

Definitely - just a taste of big money and it seems to make most people very hungry.....for more

[-] 1 points by cJessgo (729) from Port Jervis, PA 6 years ago

Very sobering and sad.Thanks again for the effort G F , I fear this will be the fate of many more of us in the future.

[-] 0 points by usaoccu (1) 6 years ago

The enemy is Terrorism. Terrorists is Global Money Kartell! Public Enemy is Rockefeller, Soros, Rotschild, Kissinger... The Patriot is: J. F. Kennedy, Benjamin Harrison Freedman ( http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HhFRGDyX48c )... USA not free, USA is Colony! (since "1913 federal reserve act" )