Minneapolis homeless shelter sees more elderly women


Women over the age of 60 are the latest victims of a growing homeless problem in Hennepin County.

WCCO reports one third of women who stay at the Salvation Army's Harbor Light Shelter in downtown Minneapolis are elderly.

A 66-year-old women, "Cindy," who's been staying at the shelter tells WCCO she left her Minneapolis duplex last September after her landlord raised the rent.

“I’ve seen women who are blind, carrying oxygen tanks. One woman turned 80 this week. She’s 80, and she’s homeless," Cindy said.

The number of homeless families in Hennepin County last year was the highest it has been in a decade at 1,453, according to an earlier report.

Cindy's circumstances aren't unusual. Advocates for the homeless say a lot of county residents are struggling at the fringes of a slow economic recovery, high foreclosure rates and a tight housing market that does not offer many options for low-income renters.

Twin Cities shelters are bursting at the seams. Many have established additional sleeping quarters in converted spaces so no one is turned away during the coldest months of the year.

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