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please sign petition September 28, 2007 1:30 AM

As Charlotte-Mecklenburg's population grows each year and our relative supply of affordable housing decreases, we continue to see the numbers of homeless families and individuals swell in our community. Over 5,000 people are homeless in Mecklenburg County on any given night and tens of thousands annually

  That total includes people who are living on the streets, staying in shelters and with friends and family, or living in transitional or permanent supportive housing. Nearly half are families; more than a third are children. "Street homelessness" is the image commonly presented to portray homelessness, yet less than 10 percent of the 5,000 homeless people in our region regularly live on the streets. Almost half of all homeless adults are employed.

  Why not invest this kind of money into day shelters for the homeless.  You could provide lifeskills classes to these people.  You could provide GED classes, and work training.  this would help them transition from a life of nothing into a life of something more.  Finally people would be able to get back on their feet and contribute back to society.  Do you really believe that people who are homeless chose to be this way?  It happens because life happens, not because this is the way they choose to live.  Please think about the future of Charlotte and the surrounding areas.  Think about the future of our youth.  Over 2,000 children in our area are homeless.

  A primary cause of homelessness in the Charlotte - Mecklenburg area is the shortage in the supply of affordable homes. A worker earning minimum wage no longer has sufficient income to afford a safe and decent apartment. And with regional fair market rents averaging more than $650 a month for a two-bedroom apartment, many working families are struggling to find homes within financial reach.  With your help, we can ask the Mayor to help

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