Child Homelessness at New High, Gay Couples Banned From Shelter

| by Michael Allen

The National Center for Family and Homelessness recently came out with a new report that says 2.5 million children experienced homelessness in the U.S. in 2013.

The study is based upon the 2013 U.S. Census data and the U.S. Department of Education’s number of homeless children in public schools, which means the actual number of kids without homes is likely much higher.

According to the report, 1 in 30 kids experienced being homeless in 2013. Almost half of the children were under six years old.

The report also says that in 2006 there were approximately 1.5 million homeless children, a million less than 2013.

The National Center for Family and Homelessness recommends financial and mental health support for single mothers (who are most often homeless with children), expanding affordable housing as well as more educational and employment opportunities.

The City Union Mission in Kansas City, Mo., has provided shelter and meals to homeless people and families for 90 years, but the Christian-based organization recently announced it would not allow gay couples to stay together under its roof.

“I knew this day would come, especially when the media would begin asking that question,” City Union Mission executive director Dan Doty recently told The Kansas City Star.

“…We are a Christian, faith-based organization that really does adhere to biblical standards," added Doty. "Our view is that [gay marriage] is inappropriate. Our intent is not to shelter same-sex couples together.”

“We want to stay true to our biblical convictions, yet we do love all people. We do shelter men who are gay, and lesbian women, and transgender people, although if their birth gender is male, we require them to dress that way if they are in our men’s shelter.”

However, the Salvation Army and Catholic Charities do not discriminate against gay homeless couples.

“We have all types of different families that we serve,” said Vicki Timiney, manager of marketing and communications for Catholic Charities of Kansas City-St. Joseph.

“Our values are Catholic, but the people who come to us aren’t necessarily Catholic, and we don’t ask them to affirm our beliefs,” added Timiney.

Sources:, The Kansas City Star / Image Credit: Dorothea Lange