According to an article in the Star-Telegram, the foreclosure crisis is contributing to the increasing number of homeless children in Texas. In a report released by National Center on Family Homelessness, Texas’ children are becoming homeless more often. Five percent of Texas’ children are homeless.
The article quoted Ken Martin, executive director of the Texas Homeless Network:
“… the percentage of Texans without health care insurance, the lack of affordable housing and high poverty rates a “recipe for disaster. At the other end of the scale are people who are way over their heads in houses they can’t afford,” Martin said. “When they lose their jobs or have a health care crisis, they’re out on the street and they take their kids with them.”
The rising rate of child homelessness in Texas is just another symptom of the foreclosure crisis and will have long lasting ramifications if we do not properly reduce the amount of foreclosures in Texas. Many mortgage companies and legislators who want to “punish irresponsible homeowners” facing foreclosure forget that when foreclosures are levied against homeowners it is the children who suffer the most.
Children are very vulnerable to the negative fallout of foreclosure such as homelessness and general poverty. Most families are not prepared for the multi-pronged financial disasters currently facing them–foreclosure, job loss, credit crisis and corporate bankruptcies. All of these factors make it hard for homeowners to avoid foreclosure or to bounce back after suffering from foreclosure without filing bankruptcy to protect their assets.
Right now, bankruptcy is the best option for families who want to stop foreclosure and avoid homelessness and the aggressive collection practices of many desperate creditors.