Homelessness now a crime in cities throughout the U.S.

It’s getting harder to be homeless in America.

Laws that criminalize homelessness are cropping up in cities throughout the country, while simultaneously, a national shortage of shelter beds and housing options is roiling the system.

Since 2001, the U.S. has lost nearly 13 percent of its low-income housing according to a report by the National Law Center on Homelessness and Poverty that surveyed 187 cities.

The advocacy group’s report found that laws placing restrictions on loitering, begging, sitting and lying down in public have increased nationwide since 2009. Eighteen percent of cities now ban sleeping in public and 42% of cities ban sleeping in vehicles.

Homelessness now a crime in cities throughout the U.S.

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