· Premium Member
In the 1930's the shanty towns of unemployed, new poor were called "Hoover Towns" because of the economic crash under Hoover's presidency. It only seems fitting to name what are likely to become the new ones after Bush.
"Tent City" Rapidly Growing in Sacramento, CA
SACRAMENTO (CBS13) ―Sacramento's homeless rate is rising fast. With more foreclosures, jobs lost and full shelters, all you have to do is walk downtown or cruise the American River and you'll meet people who are homeless for the first time.
Click HERE to see photo gallery: "Tent City" Sacramento, CA
The sea of tents along the American River is hard to miss, and their number is growing.
"Anywhere from 20 to 50 people a week is showing up out here that just became homeless," said Steve Kruse, a homeless man. "There are shelters, but they're filling up so fast."
Many of the men and women in the tents lost their jobs and then their home.
Robert Booker was laid off after working four and a half years for a Sacramento property management company, but managed to snag an open spot in a shelter. The tent he was setting up near the river was for his friend, but he is concerned he will end up there as well.
Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson knows the crisis is growing. As foreclosure and unemployment rates skyrocket, the homeless rate is now on the same track. From 2007 to 2008, Sacramento County's "new homeless" rate rose a whopping 15 percent.
The last count showed the number of homeless with no shelter at all up 26 percent. That's 1,200 people living on the street or in a car.
Mayor Johnson says the new homeless plan he's working on may include a regulated tent city. "I can't say tent cities are the answer to the homeless population in Sacramento, but I think it's one of the many things that should be considered and looked at," he said.
Kruse says the public should consider who could be next to face that situation. "Prepare! Don't turn your back on us today, because tomorrow, you'll be living next to us," he said.
"I'm seeing families out here," Kruse added. "A lady walking down here yesterday with two babies and a stroller, and she asked did anybody know where she could stay."