A new programme that aims to help people suffering from homelessness backfires, as it demands IDs with registered addresses.

Dominic, who battles mental illness, sits on a sidewalk under the Smith Ave. Bridge in Everett, Washington D.C, October 12, 2017
Dominic, who battles mental illness, sits on a sidewalk under the Smith Ave. Bridge in Everett, Washington D.C, October 12, 2017 (AP Archive)

A new programme in Washington DC ostensibly meant to help homelessness may be backfiring. In order to access facilities and aid meant to help DC’s homeless population, people will now need access to DC-issued ID cards. But without a registered address such as a homeless shelter, DC’s homeless won’t be issued valid IDs.

Shawn and Daniel are brothers, and spend most of their time together – but it's usually on the streets. They've both been homeless for over 14 years. Daniel, a US army veteran, says he's ignored by the country's elite. 

"You got multimillion dollar businesses that see these people every day, are here every day. And the White House is only two blocks away from here, and you got the Capitol Hill only three and a half blocks away. It's hurtful." he says.

Although the US is one of the richest nations in earth,  homelessness increased for first time in seven years. In 2017, there were  more than 550,000 homeless in the country, with African Americans disproportionately affected.

TRT World's Abubakr al Shamahi reports from Washington DC.

Source: TRT World