The homeless of D.C. spend their days in the aged infrastructure of historic Union Station, hidden among throngs of tourists at the National Mall, and generally, anywhere they can rest without being forced away by police and other government authorities.
Homelessness in the District is down by more than 10 percent from last year, but nearly 7,500 people remain homeless in the city, according to officials combating this issue daily.
In the last five years, a newly built Nationals baseball stadium, a host of new eateries and the renovation of the Wharf, a local seafood market, has remade Washington’s Navy Yard neighborhood.
When Mayor Muriel Bowser took office in 2015, 7,298 people were reported homeless. Of that, over 500 people lived on the streets or places not meant for habitation. For the past two years, Bowser made an annual $100 million budget commitments to the Housing Production Trust Fund and those efforts were recognized on Tuesday.
The total number of homeless people in the DMV has fallen 5 percent between 2007 and 2017, but the population within D.C. rose 30 percent in that same time according to data from the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments.
In 2015, Richard became homeless after his father died of natural causes. He didn’t know how to handle to his father’s death and he lost his job and his apartment.
More than one third of homeless people in Washington, D.C., suffer from a mental illness according to the Washington Legal Clinic, making it tougher to assist them in getting back on their feet.