Homelessness in other countries

Is homelessness a serious problem in other industrialized countries besides the US?

How do those countries deal with it?

It’s a very minor problem in the Netherlands. In fairness, al the systems are in place to provide everyone with a roof and food. Problem is, not every homeless person is coherent enough to know where to turn.

So yeah, it’s a problem, but there ARE solutions for it.

this belongs in GQ

Gee, what with all the people stamping around screaming and yelling to keep anything new from being built, I was sort of getting convinced that homelessness was the goal of industrialized nations . . .

Gairloch is running away now . . .

Its a problem as far as I’m concerned in Japan. The big train stations in Osaka and Tokyo have numerous homeless people living there.

Many of them don’t WANT to be there. They are looking for work, they WANT to work. They lost their previous jobs and couldn’t pay their mortgage/rent so were thrown on the street. They have no relatives to take them in, or the relatives don’t WANT to take them in, or they are too proud to ask relatives for help.

Of course, there are those who kinda like the freedom of a homeless lifestyle, I’m sure.

Chiming in here for Paris and suburbs

Yes, there are homeless families in Paris. Many of them are Eastern European in origin and some are 'Romani" (sometimes called gypsies). The women are often seen begging in the Metro stations and at large tourist areas with their small children and babies. I have rarely ever seen the men doing so. I don’t know if the males in the family work outside the home or not.

France provides housing for indigent and unemployed people, so technically there isn’t any reason for people to be homeless. From what I’ve seen, there aren’t too many people sleeping on the streets late at night, though I have heard there is a thriving community of people who live in the tunnels of the metro.

Something I found interesting last summer:

In our small village, there were two men I ran into daily. They were itinerants, and had moved out to the countryside when the weather was fine, to get away from Paris. They spent the day on the park bench outside the school bumming smokes and drinking cheap wine. Lovely fellows, really. They told me that in the summer, it’s much nicer to be in smaller villages, because the heat in the city is overwhelming and the parks are too crowded.
I met them everyday on our walk outside and found them quite pleasant.