I was working and homeless in DC

Monica Diaz a. Photo courtesy of Gabi Sevilla

My name is Monica Diaz. I was recently featured in a front-page Washington Post story, along with my husband Pete and our dog Sassy. I was homeless for two years, and it was the worst experience of my life: sleepless and cold nights, so cold I got blisters on my feet and fingers. I put quarters in laundry dryers to stay warm. I wasn’t able to shower when I wanted, and I didn’t have enough food to eat. People walk right by you when you are homeless, not even acknowledging when you ask for help.  

I don’t have kids, I’m not married. I have no mental health problems, and I’m working. I am a U.S. citizen who pays taxes, works and pays my bills like everybody else, and even I couldn’t get help. That’s why I spoke up and stood up for my rights. In the Post, I said, “Acknowledge us! We’re human beings! Please, just acknowledge us!”   

There should not be any homeless people in a wealthy country. Homelessness is not being addressed at all in this country. If it were, someone like me would’ve had access to better resources.  

I spoke up, and now I am housed, thanks to a GoFundMe campaign. But there needs to be more done to address homelessness. 

For more, please go to www.streetsensemedia.org/article/homeless-dc-noma-union-station-camp-gofundme-housing. 

Monica Diaz lives with her husband Pete Etheridge and their dog Sassy in Washington, D.C. 

Issues |Housing|Jobs

Region |Washington DC

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We believe ending homelessness begins with listening to the stories of those who have experienced it.