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Good Friday roundup
April 18, 2014

Read 'em all or choose one.

What to do when someone asks for spare change,” by Monica Nilsson, director of community engagement at St. Stephen’s Human Services, The Journal, April 17, 2014

Why to read it: Because you wrestle with this question.

What might surprise you: You can do more than dig in your wallet for a couple of singles.


For those who don’t follow the day to day of housing development and may think that (the often used term) “section 8” type of federally subsidized housing grows each year, 70,000 units were lost nationally just in the last 12 months.

So in the meantime, its spring in Minneapolis. One hundred shelter beds for men and women will close for the season and the downtown scene and unseen will change before our eyes. 

Affordable housing bill would benefit homeless,” by Paul Levy, Star Tribune, April 5, 2014

Why read it: Because it’s a concise take on the bonding bill provision to include $100 million for affordable and supportive housing development and rehab. (And because Lee Blons is quoted.)

What might surprise you: Rep. Alice Hausman, the bill’s sponsor, has a particular concern for homeless youth.


“It’s a cost to society to have 14,000 homeless Minnesotans on any given night,” Rep. Alice Hausman, DFL-St. Paul, the bill’s author, said Friday. “There are moral and compassionate issues to fighting homelessness. But it’s also a dollars-and-cents issue.”

The new face of homelessness,” by Melissa Brandt, Rochester schools homeless liaison, Minnesota English Journal Online, March 30, 2014

Why read it: Good explanation of the federal McKinney-Vento laws intended to protect and ensure that children and teens experiencing homelessness with their families or on their own are able to attend school.

What might surprise you: Wherever you live in Minnesota, there may be children in your own child’s classroom who are experiencing homelessness right now.


Recently, I had a student in my office who had been thrown out of his home. He was under the age of 18, so there were no shelter options available to him in Rochester. None. There were significant barriers to him obtaining a state I.D. card and copy of his birth certificate—even though he was an American citizen—so finding a job was practically impossible.