This book is about 8 families in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, who are going through evictions. The author followed and recorded during his research. Their trials through being evicted, with kids and without. Families, single, etc. It shares their stories of how they have all fallen behind on their rent because of certain social issues. The rent takes up most of their welfare checks, employment checks, etc. They end up having to live in the “ghetto” because of financial strain, evictions, drug problems, or simply being categorized by the public. It also follows the landlords who are behind the evictions. Some, if not most, have good reason to evict, in my personal opinion, their properties were not worth what the tenants were paying for rent. But read, and you can decide that for yourself.
It shared the grief, worry, tension these people, adults and children alike, have to endure due to being evicted time after time because they fall behind on their rent.
I am a resident of Milwaukee. I live on the south side of the city. I also work in the public school system and see the children of families who have been evicted, are being evicted, or are homeless, staying in shelters or with friends or families. I see the damage it causes them. They can’t concentrate in school, end up getting in trouble, getting further behind in school work, usually fall asleep in class. Some are known to steal other kids lunches because they are hungry and most only have the breakfast and lunch meals that are served at school. It is not always the parents fault that they are behind in their rent and sometimes it is. Most of the time it is because the hourly wage that they make does not meet the cost of living in Milwaukee, and in other cities across the country. They can’t pay rent, the light, buy school clothes or supplies for that matter. In the winter, Milwaukee is tundra land. It gets extremely cold. Most of these students do get a free coat, hat, and gloves from the social workers working with outside agencies. If a student falls under McKinney Vento Act (homeless) they may not have to pay for certain things at school.
I admire the author Matthew Desmond for bringing to light exactly what is going on here in Milwaukee and in other cities across America. I highly recommend this book to anyone who loves a good, non fiction read. He poured his heart and time into this project. I applaud him for this. May God keep him and shield him from any harm.
I received this book from Blogging for Books for an honest review.