By: Aida Pablo

There are 4,071 homeless people in Oakland. So why are homeless people in the streets? There are a plethora different reasons why homeless people are in the streets. The causes of homelessness in the United States include lack of affordable housing, divorce, lawful eviction, negative cash flow, post traumatic stress disorder, foreclosure, fire, natural disasters (hurricane, earthquake, or flood), mental illness, physical disability, having no family(Homeless in the united states). But, based on the research here in Oakland homelessness is because landlords are raising rent and displacing people from their houses and it is increasing the rate of homeless people. 

How does raising rent affect people?

Raising rent can increase the rate of homeless people. According to Julio, a person who worked for property management company in midtown Sacramento for 1.5 years he says “ Some folks become homeless. Others are taken to courts to proceed with evictions because they eventually fall behind rent…which makes it even more difficult, practically impossible for them to move into another apartment”(Molina). plethora of people were forced to leave and be homeless which increases the rate of homelessness people because of rent is increasing. The landlords increase the rent because they want to know if the person in the house can afford the house. Also According to Kiley Russell, a Bay City News Foundation writer interviewed Alma Blackwell who says “We see rent increases but folks’ wages aren’t increasing, and we see folks having to work two or three jobs to make ends meet,”(Russell).  So this says that if wagges do not go up displacement happens and it can lead to a plethora of emotions.

How can rent increases also lead to displacement? 

 As the rent goes up first people are displaced. Displacement means the moving of something from its place or position. Molina explained that when he had to move because of rent it caused him to become emotional (Molina). Displaced people can be so emotional and it can also lead to depression and it can cause people to commit suicide because they are not where they want to be.  In an interview with Alykhan Boolani, an Oakland principal with neighbors who were displaced, he stated, “3 families were forced to move, and replaced with white families. In one case, one of these families of 5 was actually homeless” (Boolani). This family has children and they are outside probably freezing without anything to eat because they couldn’t afford the house. Therefore, homeless in Oakland can be contributed to first rent going up and then displacement.

How many homeless people will there be in Oakland in the future if this continues?

If the trend of rising rents  and displacement continues, so  will homelessness. Jessica Bautista a news reporter article titled “New Report Predicts Aging Homeless Population Will Nearly Triple by 2030”predicted that “More specifically, the national population of people 65 or older experiencing homelessness is estimated to grow from 40,000 to 106,000 by 2030. The predicted spike is based on 30 years of existing census data”(Bautista). In the future there would be a plethora homeless people in Oakland. 

What are false misconceptions that people think about displacement?

Countless people confuse gentrification and displacement. In an article titled “The problem with confusing gentrification and displacement” by Joe Cortright he said “Governing flags as “Gentrifying.”  If there was displacement, you’d expect the number of poor people in these neighborhoods to be declining. In fact, nationally, there are more poor people living in the neighborhoods that they identify as “gentrifying” in 2013 than there were in 2000” (Cortright) What this is saying that the government is confusing Gentrification with displacement just because they see people in their neighborhoods.

Now What? 

In conclusion landlords are raising rent and displacing people from their houses and it is increasing the rate of homeless people. This is undeniable because abounding people are homeless and they need to help the community. Some people have to work 1 or 3 jobs in order to afford the house that they live in. To some people once being displaced and being sent to the streets it can give them an emotional like feeling dismal or being depressed, suicidal, sometimes by divorce, mental illness, and having no family members. In the future there will be countless of homeless people in Oakland. Oakland needs to wake up and become enlightened to this issue. We can decrease the number by building an apartment specifically for homeless people to stay in and be warm also to give them food to eat. Once Oaklanders they should be able to stay Oaklanders and not be displaced.

Annotated Bibliography

Boolani, Alykhan. “Displacement Interview.” 30 Nov. 2019.

His neighbor got displaced from their house and were sent to the street. The people that lived in their house were white people. The homeowners decided to raise the rent or sell the house 1 of the families were displaced and were sent to the streets until they could find somewhere to live in. 

Molina, Julio. “Displacement Interview.” 6 Dec. 2019.

Raising rent had a big impact to people who do not afford that much money some of the people were forced to leave the house because they couldn’t afford their house, so they had to be homeless or look for a house as fast as possible. When rent increases that area is most likely having their rent increase to.

Cortright, Joe. “How Governing Got It Wrong: The Problem with Confusing Gentrification and Displacement.” City Observatory, 15 July 2015,

The government gets confused with gentrification and there are a plethora of people that are poor in countless areas. Not only in the area in abounding areas there is abounding of gentrification and there is a plethora of people how are homeless.

Russell, Kiley. “Equity Ripples: Bay Area Gentrification Displacing Communities Of Color.” SFGate, Bay City News, 5 Aug. 2019,

That a myriad of people can’t afford a house so they have to work three or more jobs in order to afford it and to stay there with their family. Rent has increased and it is making people feel emotional and making them work a myriad jobs so they can afford the house that they live in.

Bautista, Jessica. “New Report Predicts Aging Homeless Population Will Nearly Triple by 2030.” School of Social Policy & Practice, 16 Jan. 2019,

This article talks about how she predicted how much homeless people would be in the United States. It also talked about what is the rate and the population. It also gives us the information on how much do the people’s house used to be and how it is now.



  1. Maryam 5 months ago

    Hi Aida,

    I think you’ve done a wonderful job expressing how homelessness in Oakland is a rising issue. I’m a writing tutor at San Jose State University, and some of my tutees have written about this topic as well. Nonetheless, I was still able to learn some new information from your post! For example, I didn’t know that individuals over the age of 65 are most affected by rising rents and displacement. It makes me think that there should be some kind of law to ensure that the elderly are taken care of. I also like that you cleared up the difference between gentrification and displacement. Some of my tutees have struggled with making this distinction, so I’m impressed that you addressed this misconception. Thank you for teaching me some new information and I hope you continue writing some thought-provoking blog posts!

  2. Mai 6 months ago

    Hi Aida,
    Thank you for writing a post that highlights the homeless issue in Oakland. You did a great job providing various statistics (e.g., there are 4,071 homeless people in Oakland) to further illustrate how homelessness continues to be a serious social issue. I agree with you that the increasing rent prices contributes to homelessness and hope that there will be more affordable apartments for those in need.

  3. Maya 7 months ago

    Hi Aida,

    You picked a really important topic to write about, and it’s clear you feel passionately about it. I appreciate that you clearly explained the difference between gentrification and displacement – it’s very important to make this distinction. I think it would help your argument if you found quotes end evidence that directly address homelessness and housing costs in Oakland, since that seems to be your focus. I’m curious – did you do any research on Moms4Housing as part of your project? It seems like that could be a relevant connection!

  4. Neyzer 8 months ago

    Dear Aida, I think your post was good because my topic was also about homelessness and how they ended up there because of different ways like housing being too expensive. A line that stood out to me was that ret is going up and that people go to court because they fall back on their rent and sometimes go to jail for their things. I agree with your point about rent being too high and that’s something that people can work on to help people without displacement. Thanks for writing and keep it up and thank you again for letting me read your blog post.

  5. Douglas Ramos-Mikery 8 months ago

    dear aida pablo,
    I think your post was great because you were very explicit about your topic. A line that stood out to me was when you said that there was 4,071 homeless people in oakland because thats a lot of people on the streets and without jobs. I agree with your point about raising rent is a problem because the rent will keep going up to the point where it’s to expensive. Thanks for writing and keep it up.

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