As a native New Yorker, and just as a majority of New Yorkers who live within the city and commute daily either on the subway or the bus, I see many homeless people on the streets begging for money or food, as well as homeless people in the subways sharing their stories by writing it on cardboard or walking through the trains asking for money, food, or weed. Many New Yorkers have their headphones in not paying much attention to them and are just trying to get to their destination.

New York City is one of the greatest, busiest, thrilling city of dreams, as many people expect it to be. This city has many opportunities despite its flaws, and I love my city. It breaks my heart seeing homeless people having to beg for food, despite the reasons for them doing so.

There is a significant rise in homelessness, and we are not doing enough about it. According to the Bowery, nearly 20% of New York City residents already live below the poverty line, in which there are about 63,000 people who sleep in a municipal shelter and nearly 4,000 on the streets, subway, or other public places.[1]

Homelessness is a human rights issue. The United Nations Sustainable Development Goal 1states that the 2030 initiative will eradicate extreme poverty. “By 2030, ensure that all men and women, in particular the poor and the vulnerable, have equal rights to economic resources.”[2] In theory this sounds great, who doesn’t want to eradicate poverty?  Who wants people begging for food and money in the streets?

The issue at hand is that these homeless people are still human beings and they deserve to be treated as such. If the shelters, governmental organizations, and churches were more equipped to help in housing and providing services for the homeless to help them get back on their feet, such as receiving adequate mental, psychological, and physical help, I believe the homelessness problem would decrease significantly.

Eradicating homelessness is an important debate however if there were more efforts to aid in this then it would be a little easier. I believe that no one should be homeless begging on the streets for food.

I urge you to think twice about how you can help in eradicating the homeless epidemic in our city and cities all over. Together united we can put an end to homelessness.