Homelessness in New York City has reached the highest levels since the Great Depression. In November 2008 more than 36,600 homeless men, women, and children were sleeping each night in New York City municipal shelters, streets, parks, and in the subway system. Despite these ever increasing numbers of people without a place to call home, a recent study by Picture the Homeless reveals that there may be enough vacant lots and buildings in Manhattan alone to house the homeless population both in the shelter system and on the street.

On Tuesday we’ll talk with housing activist Michael Premo about the origins of this paradox, the human struggle it creates, and what groups around the city are doing about it. Michael Premo is a producer forĀ Housing is a Human Right, an ongoing multimedia documentary portrait of the struggle for home in New York City.

Music (in order played):

“Where I End And You Begin” by Radiohead

“Heaven” by Talking Heads

“Searching With My Good Eye Closed” by Soundgarden

“Respiration” by Black Star

>> Listen to 12/1/09: Housing is a Human Right