The New Homeless on NBC's Dateline 7/4/03 @ 8PM (EDT)

  1. Tomorrow night's Dateline on NBC is going to focus on the "new homeless". Mark your calendars. It is BOUND to be scary.
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  2. 56 Comments

  3. by   renerian
    I will watch that and thanks for the heads up.

    renerian
  4. by   sbic56
    It's the story of those who are on the other side of that huge income gap. These are the extreme of the people that I have been talking about on that other thread. I'm glad it is at least getting some coverage.
  5. by   CseMgr1
    A 25-day-old baby died recently in Atlanta of malnutrition. The authorities were going to prosecute her parents (who were jobless and homeless)...until they discovered that these people had no where to turn to...until it was too late.

    Wake UP, Mr. Bush! This is the United States of America, not a third-world country!

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    City rallies for grieving couple with a job and a place to live

    By MILO IPPOLITO
    The Atlanta Journal-Constitution


    JOHN SPINK / Staff
    Atlanta Mayor Shirley Franklin (front) announces assistance Thursday for the funeral Saturday of Enestae Kessee Jr., infant son of Enestae Kessee and Bonita Williams (right). At left is Joyce Dorsey, president and CEO of Fulton Atlanta Community Action Authority.

    Enestae Kessee Jr., the homeless newborn who died in Atlanta this week, will get a proper burial on Saturday.

    His grieving parents have been given a place to live. The father now has a job as a laborer.

    Mayor Shirley Franklin and other politicians stood beside the parents, Bonita Williams and Enestae Kessee, at City Hall on Thursday to show that Atlanta cares.

    Less than a week earlier, the homeless couple was shouting in the street seeking medical help for their child, who had stopped breathing. They were ignored until they walked more than a mile to the Atlanta City Detention Center.

    "Hopefully, this will be a catalyst not only for the city but the county and the state to do what is necessary to get a handle on this [homeless] problem, and that way this child's death will not be in vain," said state Sen. Vincent Fort.

    Initially, the parents were charged with child cruelty in the baby's death. Charges were dropped after a medical examiner concluded the parents had not injured the child.

    Williams and Kessee held hands tightly as Franklin and the others began the news conference at the mayor's office Thursday.

    The mother, 19, wore a conservative, eggshell-colored suit. Her hair was dressed. She had a distraught look on her face. The father, 24, stepped to the microphone briefly.

    "First of all, I would like to thank Mayor Franklin, first and foremost," Kessee said, "and everyone else who has pitched in."

    When asked about the tragedy, Kessee said: "When God steps in, it's what he says and not what everybody else says."

    Several businesses and civic groups have come together to provide for the child's funeral and the parents' needs.

    The funeral for Enestae Jr. will be 1 p.m. Saturday at Overcoming Church of God, 385 Gardner St. He will be buried in Lincoln Cemetery. Watkins Funeral Home is handling the arrangements free of charge.

    PRS Construction has given Kessee a job as a laborer. Capitol Development Group has given the couple six months of free rent at an undisclosed address.

    Furniture is being provided by Atlanta Furniture Bank and Revelations of Life. Buckhead Ministries is donating food and household supplies.

    MARTA gave them transit cards.

    Families First and Cascade United Methodist Church are offering guidance services, and Fulton Atlanta Community Action Authority is providing grief counseling.

    A fund for donations has been set up at Citizens Trust Bank.

    "We wanted to let this family know we grieve with them," said City Councilman Derrick Boazman.
  6. by   GraceyB
    It should NOT have come down to the death of a child to get help.
  7. by   oramar
    There will be more of this as states prepare to yank the run out from the already to thin social safety net.
  8. by   tonicareer
    My county has an almost 13 percent unemployment rate and it is getting worse. Several major factories have closed, a school is being closed and students consolidated, stores and offices closing thru bankruptcy. The one large store in town is going to fastlanes which don't need cashiers and the 2 grocery stores are talking about doing the same. We have huge hotels sitting empty. Apartment complexes are half empty and landlords are raising rents to compensate. Tons of houses for sell and being repossessed. Hospital and medical facilities are laying off workers. For this county the depression is already here.
  9. by   CseMgr1
    Originally posted by GraceyB
    It should NOT have come down to the death of a child to get help.
    No, it shouldn't have....and the help came too late for that baby, didn't it?
  10. by   rebel_red
    Originally posted by GraceyB
    It should NOT have come down to the death of a child to get help.


    amen.

    Tres
  11. by   nursedawn67
    Originally posted by GraceyB
    It should NOT have come down to the death of a child to get help.
    I agree
  12. by   CseMgr1
    I found this documentary deeply moving...and frightening, because it could have been me, anyone in my family out on the streets for the first time. I was also angered by the way our society victimizes these families. They didn't choose to live in emergency shelters, in their cars or live with the daily threat that their house is going to to be yanked out from underneath them. They wound up in these places because, like everything else in this country, they were as expendable as a piece of toilet paper.

    But, God bless that single mother, for perservering! If she hadn't fought the beaurecrats in NYC like she had, there is no telling what would have happended to her children....
  13. by   fergus51
    Parents who can't care for their children have the option of adoption and there is no excuse for allowing a child to die.

    I watched the show and found it so moving. It is really easy for people to think it could never happen to them and that the homeless are somehow defective... The truth is no one is all that safe.
  14. by   Milehighnurse
    [QUOTE]Originally posted by fergus51
    [B]Parents who can't care for their children have the option of adoption and there is no excuse for allowing a child to die.

    The article didn't state the cause of death. I wonder if it may have been SIDS in which case there was nothing they could have done.
    I also watched the documentary and was riveted. When I was a single parent of 3 little ones, there were so many times where we were one step from the streets. OMG did I feel these people's pain!!! I think the hardest thing to endure is the degredation and the frustration of trying to do the best you can and having people, who are supposed to be in a position to help you, treat you like second class garbage. Does wonders for your self-esteem.

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