The film that I chose to watch for this media blog is called The Families Forced into Homelessness: No Place to Call Home.This documentary was published on March 7, 2019 by Real Stories. This film is based off of poverty and becoming homeless from it. Although this film is based off of the location in London, it still applies to our country. I say this because homelessness and poverty is something that is being dealt with all over the world and it is important that we as a society understand that this is a universal problem. In this documentary, two families end up evicted by their landlords. They must deal with a year of homelessness and switching from house to house to stay with their friends and family. The families presented in this documentary are single mothers with young children. The children have to ride a wave of homelessness, while trying to face unexpected changes daily.
In the documentary, the mothers were faced with challenges on how they have children that are still in school and they are becoming homeless. These challenges that were faced were on how they were going to get to school when they are moved so far away from it and if they are still going to be able to attend school. A reading that we discussed in class stated, “According to the U.S. Department of Education, almost 1.4 million school children experienced homelessness during the 2016-2017 school year. Some of these children were among the estimated 4.4 million poor people in 2017 who were temporarily sleeping on the floors or couches of family or friends because they could not afford their own housing,” (National Law Center on Homelessness & Poverty, 2019, p. 28). This is a huge issue in our world today where there needs to be a change. School is an important factor in every child’s life where they need to start early on and continue. How are they supposed to attend school when they’re homeless? They simply can’t, or at least get the correct education.
A key point addressed numerous times in this documentary was poverty. Poverty in the world is a crisis that has been ongoing for years. Living in poverty is something one will never understand unless they go through it themselves. After reading and learning about poverty in homelessness, it gave me more understanding of it all. In the book, Not a Crime to be Poor: The Criminalization of Poverty in America, it is mentioned, “We have to turn the coin over and provide prenatal care for all, child development for all children, first- class education for all, decent jobs and effective work supports, affordable housing, health lawyers as needed, safe neighborhoods, no violence on the street or at home, healthy communities, economic, social, racial and gender justice, and justice rather than charity,” (Edelman, 2017, p. 183). I couldn’t agree more with this statement. After seeing the daily struggles of what these families had to go through for months, it made me realize how important these struggles can affect people and what they can do to someone’s life.
Another key point presented in this film is the court and law when dealing with homelessness and poverty. As many aspects in class we discussed how race in courts is an issue that our world deals with. In this documentary, it was discussed how the court blamed the mother of being intentionally homeless (the mother was African American). This is a big issue in the criminal justice system. Nobody has intentions to be homeless. In my opinion, the judge stating that to the bother should have been working on ways to get her and her children to be safe and find them a home.
This documentary gave me a better understanding to the real struggles in daily lives to homelessness and poverty and how it can affect a human being. It also gave me a better visual understanding to what we have been learning in our readings and discussions in class. In this documentary, it helped me relate a lot of the statistics and facts that we have learned in our readings and helped demonstrate what really goes on when someone is homeless and struggling mentally and physically.
I would recommend this documentary not only because of how eye opening it is, but how much someone can learn from watching it. It makes you want to help these people struggling and make we as a society make a difference in the world so people don’t have to go through this anymore. Thankfully, the families in this documentary were able to find peace and a home eventually, but it was still an experience that they will have to deal with in their everyday lives mentally. It makes you realize how truly blessed you are in life.
Edelman, P.B. (2017). Not a Crime to be Poor: The Criminalization of Poverty in America(p.
183). New York. The New York Press.
National Law Center on Homelessness & Poverty. (2019). Housing not handcuffs: Ending the
criminalization of homelessness & Poverty(p. 28). Retrieved from http://nlchp.org/wpcontent/uploads/2019/12HOUSING-NOT-HANDCUFFS-2019-FINAL.pdf
Link for film: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B1IziIrfCp4