In North America, the number of homeless will rise again

Don't treat the homeless as criminals

In North America, more and more municipalities are cracking down on the homeless by adopting more and more stringent bylaws and regulations prohibiting begging, loitering, and sleeping outside.

On any given night, about 636,000 Americans and 300,000 Canadians are homeless. While these numbers have declined over the past few years, they will soon rise again. Recent evidence suggests that the effects of the economic downturn on the homeless are intensifying.

For these individuals, begging, loitering and sleeping outside is not a choice, it is a necessity.

Blame the economy, not the victims.