With the mortgage crisis and all the foreclosures, most people expected us to have a lot more families coming in. But instead, the issue has been that it’s harder to get people out [of transitional housing] into [permanent] housing. People that are getting foreclosures are moving into rentals. Rental rates have gone up, vacancies have gone down and landlords can be as selective as they want to be. So we can’t find affordable places for our families. You know, when people think about a homeless person, they think of a grizzled man on the street. But homeless people work at Target, work at Starbucks, have families; the husband in one of our families is in the National Guard.
Cate Steane, Executive Director, FESCO Family Shelter, Hayward, California