Struggles Being Homeless In Oakland by Jaqueline

December 19, 2019


Struggles Being Homeless In Oakland

Why do you think people are homeless and living on the streets? Do you think it is their fault? What is the first thing that comes to mind when you hear Oakland? Homelessness has a big impact on Oakland representing the city and community. A way to fix homelessnes is to lower rent prices because high rent is a leading cause of people losing their house. This can also benefit people who don’t have the money to maintain their house and are on the verge of losing their house. The homelessness population is 4,071 in Oakland, it rose by 47% from 2017 to 2019. This information is from the article titled, “Oakland’s per-capita homeless rate is higher than San Francisco and Berkeley”(Oakland’s per-capita homeless rate is higher than San Francisco and Berkeley). With homelessness increasing, it is becoming an illogical impediment. The reason why homelessness increasing is a illogical impediment  is because it is an obstacle that the community needs to overcome, but it is illogical that the community, isn’t doing anything to prevent homelessness from increasing even more.

Based on the information collected from interviews, and research, homelessness increased because of expensive housing and not because of homeless people being, “drug addicts and alcoholics.” One reason why homelessness increased was because of expensive housing. From 2017 to 2019 homelessness increased by 47 percent. The main cause of homelessness according to the article titled, “Homelessness in Oakland”, it says,  “(1) lack of affordable housing, (2) unemployment, (3) poverty, and (4) low wages, in that order.” (Homelessness in Oakland). Also in an interview with a current homeless person, when they were asked if they think that increasing employment will decrease homelessness, and if they think that there is an inadequate amount of jobs,  they said, “no , but if they decrease the rent prices then there would be less homeless people.” (anonymous). This shows that employment isn’t as big as a problem as expensive housing. In an article titled, “The Crisis” it states, “California accounts for 50 percent of the nation’s homeless population.There are many reasons behind these staggering statistics. Skyrocketing housing costs, a housing inventory deficit, and a decrease in state funding are all contributing forces.” (The Crisis) This proves that expensive housing is a big problem.

Stereotypes affect all homeless people, not just the ones where those stereotypes apply. A stereotype about homeless people is that they’re drug addicts and alcoholics. In an article titled, “Oakland homeless camps point to racial bias”, published on July 1st, 2017, it talks about how a stereotype about homeless people is that their mentally ill, or drug addicts, or not even trying to work for money but trying to get it from other people by handouts. But if you actually talk to someone then you will know that they are homeless because they can’t keep a roof over their head (Oakland homeless camps point to racial bias). Those stereotypes affect all homeless people because in an interview with Jacqueline Webster, when I asked if she gives homeless people money when they ask, and she said, “No, because I don’t know if they are just going to spend it on drugs, but if I have food or snacks on me, I will offer them some” (Webster). This affects all homeless people because someone might be starving or thirsty, but people will be hesitant to give them money because they just think that they will just spend it on drugs or alcohol. 

Homelessness does not really have any positive outcomes but it has quite a few negative outcomes. A negative outcome of homelessness said by Hannah perez is, “they make a mess which causes a big problem for the community, which takes taxes to take money to pay people to clean up after them.” (Perez). Most homeless people are not making a mess they are just making encampments which other people might see it as a “mess”.

Now back to that question, why do you think people are homeless, and living on the streets? Is it their fault that their homeless? Next time you hear Oakland, hopefully homelessness doesn’t come to mind. Homelessness is a big problem in Oakland with the homelessness population increasing, society, and Oakland residents are being semiconscious about homelessness, because they see homeless people, but they don’t do anything to help them. A way to help prevent homelessness can be to lower rent prices because that is the main cause of homlessness. Most homeless people become homeless because of expensive housing and not because they are alcoholics and/or drug addicts. Hopefully, the community overcomes the impediment of homelessness so that people can live a better life and no longer be homeless.

Annotated bibliography

“The Crisis.” Oakland Homeless Response, City of Oakland, 2018,

This article talks about the big problem with homelessness and statistics. This article passes the CRAAP test because it is current and it was made in 2018 by the city of Oakland. This article is also purposeful and relevant because it is enlightening others on homelessness.

.“Homelessness in Oakland.” National Law Center on Homelessness & POVERTY,

This article talks about some root causes about homelessness and one of the main reasons why women are homeless. Domestic violence is the leading cause of homelessness for women and some of the other main reasons people are homeless are because they can’t afford it, don’t have a job, poverty, and low wages.This article passes the CRAAP test because the purpose of the article was to show the main causes of homelessness and it did that.

Jr, Otis R. Taylor. “Oakland Homeless Camps Point to Racial Bias.”, San Francisco Chronicle, 1 July 2017,

The article talks about some stereotypes about homeless people. For example that their mentally ill, or drug addicts.This article passes the CRAAP test because it is current, it was published on July 1st, 2017. This article is also relevant because it relates to my topic about homelessness.

Lautaimi, Jacqueline Siolani, and Jacqueline Kay Webster. “Homelessness Interview.” 23 Nov. 2019.

The interview for Jacqueline was to see homelessness from her point of view because she was once homeless in the past. This person is credible because they know what it’s like to be homeless and how hard it is to get a place to live since housing is really expensive.

Lautaimi, Jacqueline Siolani, and Hannah Perez. “Homelessness Interview.” 25 Nov. 2019.

The interview with Hannah was to see her perspective of homeless people and her opinion as someone who has never been homeless. Hannah passes by homeless people on a daily basis, so she was interviewed to see her opinion on homeless people even though she doesn’t exactly know the struggle or how difficult it is to be homeless. Hannah passes the CRAAP test because her interview was purposeful and it was to see her perspective on homelessness.

Lautaimi, Jacqueline Siolani. “Homelessness Interview.” 28 Nov. 2019.

This person wanted to stay anonymous but, this person is a current homeless person, and the reason I chose to interview them, was because homelessness is my topic and I wouldn’t want to make a blog without including information from someone who experiences homelessness on a daily basis. The interviewee passes the CRAAP test because they are relevant, and they are what my topic is based off of. Also because this person has first hand knowledge about homelessness.

Pena, Luz. “Oakland’s per-Capita Homeless Rate Is Higher than San Francisco and Berkeley.” ABC7 San Francisco, 24 July 2019,

The article talks about the homeless population and how many homeless people there are in Oakland. This article is credible because it was published, june 23rd, 2019. Also it is a reliable source because the author is a journalist that won 9 emmys for journalism named luz pena and works for abc7news.