4,085 Massachusetts high students are homeless and alone.
There are 4,300 families with children and pregnant women in Massachusetts’ Emergency Assistance (EA) shelter program. But astoundingly, there are approximately 6,000 high school students who are not only homeless, but are on their own. 1
The effects of homelessness are severe, and often long-lasting or even life-threatening. Those experiencing homelessness often face emotional, medical and/or financial crises that can be incredibly difficult to overcome. Youth are particularly vulnerable, and also face academic challenges and increase risk of violence.
In January of 2015, the unaccompanied youth homelessness bill was signed into law (Chapter 450 of the Acts of 2014). The MA Coalition for the Homeless is seeking $2 million in the final FY’16 budget (as proposed by the Senate) to address the housing and support service needs of unaccompanied youth and adults in Massachusetts.
What can you do? Encourage your legislator to support this necessary funding. Click here.
1. Based on a 2013 study with high school students, the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education estimates that 4,085 high school students are experiencing homelessness out on their own. Thousands more unaccompanied youth and young adults who are experiencing homelessness are not reflected in these numbers because they already have dropped out of school or have finished school. Source: MA Coalition for the Homeless.
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