A woman stands next to a street holding a sign reading "AFFORDABLE HOUSING NOW!!"
Photo by Robyn Di Giacinto

I have been a lifelong resident of DC. I was born during the Civil Rights Movement. My mother tells me when I was 2 or 3 years old, she marched with me.

Being an advocate for the poor and homeless, I sell my paper by the White House. I never really developed a sales pitch besides trying to be nice and respectful of all people and tell them about the paper I am selling.

Looking ahead to 2017, I am hopeful but worried about some of my fellow vendors who are still living outside, on the streets. Being without housing is something that takes a long time get over, even after you are housed. So I am hopeful that people will still try to get housing before they die, and I wish the government would start talking about building infrastructures that include universal housing that requires people who get that housing to pay one-third of their income for rent.

I plan to keep trying to organize the community around our right to housing. Along with my Street Sense family, I am always fearful that those on the right will take us back to those dark days of the past. But I would only say to Street Sense readers and the world, pray and know that God’s plan is the best of plans.

May God bless the poor and the homeless to have a home.