On the street, messages from the hungry homeless

April 26th, 2016  |  Published in Today's Special

Thousands of unsheltered homeless people sleep on New York City streets, subway and in other public spaces, according to Coalition for the Homeless. To feed themselves, they ask for help from strangers or rely on food programs such as soup kitchens and SNAP benefits, or both.

On the street, the food they get ranges from an untouched steak to leftovers. “The steak was the best. I also got to feed her with the bone,” said a homeless woman who sat at Times Square, pointing to a dog besides her. “People sometimes give us fast food that’s hours old. That should go to a dumpster.”

A NYTable reporter in midtown Manhattan chronicled life on the street.

Timmy Hung-Ming Shen is an M.S. student at Columbia Journalism School, where he covers education, ethnic communities and food. Previously, he interned at PBS in Taiwan and Radio Moreeni in Finland. Back in his homeland Taiwan, he received a B.A. in journalism from National Chengchi University. He loves to cook Chinese/Taiwanese food and is addicted to hot pot. Follow him on Twitter at @timmyshen0716 or email him at hs2859@columbia.edu.

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