Making Justice Real

The Official Blog of the Legal Aid Society of the District of Columbia

NPR Feature Tells of D.C.’s Crowded Shelters, Enormous Needs

As a part of its series for National Hunger and Homelessness Awareness Week, WAMU/NPR ran a powerful story yesterday about Ebony Shelley, a young, homeless mother struggling to find space at a shelter in the District. With about 600 families on the waiting list for D.C.’s emergency shelters, a bed in one of them is incredibly hard to come by. The reporter followed Ms. Shelley and her infant son — the youngest of her four children — as she walked around the city at night, unsure of where the two of them would be sleeping. Consistent with what we know from our clients, the WAMU/NPR story also revealed that Ms. Shelley is a victim of domestic violence who fled her abuser, noting that for about 25 percent of homeless families in the D.C. region, domestic violence is the biggest factor in their homelessness. For 15 percent, it’s the direct cause. We encourage all of you to read and listen to this story, which can be found here.

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