Friday 5 May 2017

Homelessness: Make June the end of May - #EndMayInJune

Signs of bad times
As I walked to work this morning and then walked back to my hotel to collect my stowed baggage for the station in preparation for my journey back home, I could not help but notice the number of young people sat on the ground, their backs to the walls of shops or offices building signifying some need.
Need, not wants, here were the youth in the 5th largest economy in the world without a prospect, opportunity, promise or hope. The only thing occupying their minds was the means to take shelter compounded with one sign that broke my heart, the young man’s sign said he had not eaten for days.
Now, I do not care if that is anything but the truth, I would hope that cynicism and suspicion would not rob me of sympathy, maybe empathy, a sense of compassion and the ability to be touched by the hardship of another.
Great needs with little supply
Besides, I know privation, not to that extent, but I have gone hungry in the midst of lack and when I would have been rendered homeless, I was fortunate to find support from people who covered my nakedness, shame and misfortune. To them, I am grateful probably not to the extent that I can repay them, but that when I see another in a situation that I have once experienced, I will not ignore them and walk on by if I am opportuned to do something, no matter how little.
Then, there was another thing on the signs that struck me, at least were asking for £16 to be able to spend a night in a home shelter. What the home shelter would probably provide is a bed, a shower, hot drinks and some safety from the elements and menace. I would not know if they also provide food.
Homelessness is a thief of the future
However, for someone who has nothing and has not eaten for days, how on earth would the shelter take priority over food, the little that comes from alms might only cover just one meal and so they are still out on the streets day after day in the hope that someone would just pour our God and love upon them that they would not only smile but cry the tears of joy bearing hope.
I have said before, homelessness is debilitating to the extent that it almost impossible to see how steals the future away from the present which becomes an enduring and harrowing existence. Without a home address, you probably can’t take on the most basic jobs, talk less of open a bank account or make any headway in life beyond being caught in the rut.
The charity of no clarity
Then I have my gripe with homeless charities, I am not convinced they are doing enough if anything, I see signs that I should give to charities rather than the homeless. I have this to say, if the charities were really seen to be helping the homeless, there would not be so many homeless and somewhat helpless people on our streets.
The other side of this argument is we probably would be persuaded to give to the charities and readily walk the homeless to the nearest point of help just as the Good Samaritan of old committed time and resources to the wounded stranger.
In this electioneering season in the UK, I have even bigger concerns; Theresa May boasts of offering strong and stable leadership, but I have no time for leadership that has no heart. Our social services are cut to the bone, that people cannot get by. The thought that British nurses are resorting to food banks in full employment is a disgrace I cannot find the words to express. [The Independent]
Make June the end of May
Theresa May said there are many complex reasons why people use food banks, I’m sorry, the reason is not complex, it is simple, they are not being paid enough and the cost of living is rising far beyond their means.
The system is completely messed up and I do not believe Theresa May as a bloody difficult woman has the wherewithal to bring the necessary humanity and compassion to bear to change things for the better for those who suffer homelessness, who use food banks or have to rely on the system to get by. That people in full employment should live from hand to mouth is utterly contemptible, an atrocity of the magnitude that has no mitigation or acceptable excuse.
This is not the United Kingdom that should be happy to have remain like this, things must change, the homeless and the hungry nurses are neither thinking Brexit nor strong leadership, they are hoping against hope for respite, food for their hunger, shelter for their heads and a future that gives them a chance for a different life.
Theresa May is not that person and I’m afraid, no such one is in the Tory Party to do that too.

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