“In King County, Washington (which includes Seattle), about 3,372 people—more than half of the county’s unsheltered population—are living in vehicles. And in Greater Los Angeles, which has the largest unsheltered homeless population in the country, more than 15,000 people live in cars, vans, and RVs.” – Slate
Homeless people are necessarily resourceful. While many sleep wherever they can, others rely on tents or shacks, many are opting for cars. Cars are more solid, lockable, and may be necessary for commuting. In today’s society, a car may be more necessary than a house, and now also doubles as one. Cars aren’t as comfortable, unless the seats fold flat, hence the interest in vans and RVs. RVs were designed as recreational vehicles, but they are becoming appealing as Affordable Housing on wheels. The problem is where to park them? Finding space for tent cities is tough, as is finding parking lots that could otherwise be making money with paid spaces. Solutions are being attempted, but the fundamental need is not being met. Even when new construction creates new housing, it frequently is directed at “luxury” accommodations, not necessarily affordable. Until then, don’t assume that parked car is only a car. It may be someone’s home, and it may be a step up from living in a tent or under a bridge.