Smart Talk: Homeless Pennsylvanians suffer as the temperatures drop

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Finding a place out of the cold for homeless Pennsylvanians is always a challenge as the winter months set in. Now with the pandemic restrictions in place, the challenges have become more acute.

Social distancing guidelines have cut available shelter space significantly, forcing many to remain instead in the homeless encampments scattered around the city of Harrisburg. Advocates fear the situation will get worse with potential winter storms and the surging virus.

Appearing on Smart Talk Tuesday to share their perspective on the homeless situation are Mike McKenna, President Tabor Community Services, Jen Koppel, Executive Director, Lanc Co MyHome and the Lancaster County Coalition to End Homelessness and Anne Guenin, Executive Director of the Downtown Daily Bread, a soup kitchen and shelter offering services to the homeless.

Low income Pennsylvanians bear unfair burden in the legal system

A comprehensive study by the ACLU of Pennsylvania looked into the impact of court fines and costs on low-income earners in the state. The findings highlight the disproportionate impact that some face in the criminal justice system.

The study looked at the average amounts imposed in court cases, how long it takes defendants to pay the money, and how long court debt remains uncollected.

Mary Catherine Roper is the Deputy Legal Director of the ACLU of Pennsylvania and she appears on Smart Talk Tuesday to discuss the social implications of their findings.


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