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News Link • California

Skid Road: How California's army of homeless...

•, By Sheila Flynn

There are thousands of them, dotted around the city and the county, in a trend that's impossible to miss – and one that extends across the Golden State. From Palo Alto to Sacramento and San Francisco, the proliferation of RV and vehicle living has become more and more obvious in recent years against a backdrop of complex socioeconomic issues.

Many of these are not holidaymakers or pleasure seekers; in fact, thousands of RV dwellers are homeless. And their numbers are actually difficult to quantify.

California, which is home to 12 percent of the US population, also hosts a disproportionate amount of the nation's homeless at 22 percent. But many do not fit the stereotype of homelessness; they don't have drug or alcohol or psychiatric problems. They are employed, just not making enough to afford the state's still-rising rental prices. Some don't consider themselves homeless at all, simply viewing the unorthodox housing choice as just that – a choice, and a cheaper one.

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