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Is it a Gender Thing?

Homelessness is a gender problem… some might say. When arriving at a street corner a driver will most likely see a scraggly man holding up a cardboard sign. Every once in awhile there will be seen a woman on the corner wearing a sign that says she is a mother and is in need of money for her children. Homeless men have come out saying that women receive special privileges. This fact isn’t just criticism researchers have found it to be true. Women are more likely to get into a shelter and get hired for jobs. One individual explained that women are treated like human beings and men are just herded around like cattle.

The helpless innocent victim is the picture society has painted for the female, so when pedestrians see a woman on the corner they feel more remorse. If you are to include the fact that women have children and families to provide for aide comes much quicker for them than a male. It could be because men on the street have developed a bad rep. Question: how many times have you heard don’t give your money to that man he’s going to spend it on liquor? As the days go on we cease to look at the homeless male population as human beings in need, instead we look at them as men who were too lazy to be successful in life. For some, abuse of drugs and alcohol may be the case, but we don’t know that. Women are presented with the narrative of the victim; the woman who is running away from an abusive relationship or the woman who can’t find a job because of her sex. These narratives are engraved in the public’s mind when they consider who to give their hard earnings to. It is unfair, but this was how we were taught to think.

Homeless males might believe women have it better and it's easy to understand why they think that, yet when you put yourself in a woman’s shoes being without shelter is extremely dangerous. Men were physically built to brave the turmoil of the street where a woman would have a harder time. They are more likely to get raped and robbed. Criminals will definitely attack a defenseless woman way before they go after a man. Some females have to discard their gender in order to survive and some would even move back into their abusive relationship in order to avoid the uncertainty of the streets. All this proves is that homelessness is no fun for anyone and not one race, age or gender gets it easier. It’s a toll and stress that burdens any and every individual who is unfortunate to have to go through it.

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