Winter is the cruelest season for the homeless. This blog, from last winter, was the very first I posted on this site. Since then the numbers of the homeless have grown, after several years of decline. New York City now has an estimated 61,000 homeless, the most in its history. A recent survey by the U.S. Department of Education gauged the number of children living without shelter or in crowded houses with two or more families to be nearly 2.5 million. That's also a historic high. I wanted to post this blog again to remind us all that those bodies huddled on the streets are people who deserve our compassion.
The woman sat on a rolled-out sleeping bag beneath the protective awning of an office building, just barely out of the cold winter rain. Her hair, brown and curly, seemed bouncy in a way that she did not. She was perhaps 30, dressed in jeans and a pretty, if frayed, pink fleece jacket. She might have been a backpacker ready to embark on a weekend camping trip—except that she wasn’t.
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