It is incongruous that in an era of great economic strength, with low unemployment, low inflation, a booming stock market, and high consumer optimism, a walk down the streets of any of our metropolises will reveal homeless people who are bedraggled, poor, and in many cases disabled by illness. It is all the more perturbing when one considers that these visibly destitute individuals, the sight of whom often offends the sensibilities of passersby, represent the mere tip of an iceberg of poverty and dislocation, most of which is invisible to the casual observer: Many homeless people are able to maintain a relatively normal appearance while living on the streets and are not particularly noticeable. In addition to street people, many other homeless people live in temporary or emergency shelters or seedy motels, and large numbers live in substandard housing or shanties. Yet others move in with relatives or friends because...

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