Skid Row is America’s only third world city because it is home to hundreds of homeless people, most of them who are mentally ill. Skid Row is located in Downtown Los Angeles. 

Why are there so many people who are homeless in the United States, with hundreds living on Skid Row alone? Well to start, at least 30% of homeless people in the US have some form of mental illness. Prolonged homelessness can cause mental illnesses, if one was not already present at the beginning of the homelessness.

A story mentioned in the short video is on Sharon Cameron, a survivor of Skid Row. Sharon Cameron was homeless for nearly 25 years, struggling with mental illness and drug addiction most of her life. She slept outside of a public library. Sometimes she didn’t know where she was. She was depressed and attempted suicide. She is one of 9 children, and her oldest sister committed suicide. Sharon was diagnosed with depression. She didn’t want to live, but she couldn’t seem to die. She has been off the streets for a year, and works as a peer advocate at the homeless center where she lives. She now is helping as many homeless people as she can. Angel is Sharon’s sister, who’s real name is Debbie. Debbie was abused sexually, which is the reason for her mental illnesses. Debbie ended up in jail in the video because she bought something for an undercover cop. 

To learn more about Skid Row and how you can help, watch the video below: