National census finds more people living on streets —


National census finds more people living on streets

SINCE THE weakening economy may result in more job losses and an increase in homeless people, the Social Development and Human Security Ministry has decided to conduct a census and work towards improving the quality of their lives.

The ministry had previously spent Bt118 million on building three temporary shelters in Bangkok, Chiang Mai and Khon Kaen to provide housing for 698 homeless persons.

This time, the ministry along with Community Organisations Development Institute, the Bangkok Metropolitan Administration and nine related agencies dispatched survey teams between April 1 and May 15. The aim was to count the number of homeless persons in 60 provinces, which will be combined with a number of persons living in shelters. This data will then be analysed to formulate guidelines to sustainably improve the quality of life for the homeless.

The survey, dubbed the country’s largest census of homeless persons, reported that that were 686 people without a roof over their head in 60 provinces. It also found that homeless people usually travelled from Bangkok to other provinces by train.

Bangkok, Chiang Mai and Khon Kaen were previously surveyed in 2015.

A team of officials was dispatched on May 16 to conduct a survey in another 16 provinces, including Chiang Mai, Khon Kaen, Nakhon Ratchasima, Udon Thani, Pathum Thani and Samut Prakan.

So far, 112 homeless persons have been reported in Chiang Mai, a slight increase from the previous year. Though some have died in the interim, others have arrived from the Northeast and Central region looking for jobs. The areas with the highest number of homeless persons in Chiang Mai are the Three Kings Monument, Thapae Gate and Chang Pheuk Road.

The Khon Kaen team, meanwhile, split into six smaller teams to survey 71 locations in the Nakhon Khon Kaen municipal area and found 67 homeless persons, which when combined with results from the 19 provinces in the Northeast, brings the region’s total to 512.

Suchin Aimin, president of the Homeless Association, said many factors contributed to the growing number of homeless people, namely family disputes, chronic ailments or disabilities. Most of these people make a living by scavenging garbage and selling recycled items, he said, adding that many have health issues and cannot access the healthcare system as they either don’t have Thai ID cards or have lost them.

He welcomed the attempt to conduct a census on the number of homeless persons nationwide, so they can be provided with help.

“I believe that by now, there must be 10,000 homeless people across the nation as the slump in economy has left many jobless,” he added.

The census stemmed from a Cabinet resolution on March 8, 2016 over protests by the People’s Movement for a Just Society (P-Move). The resolution covered three main points: allocation of Bt118 million to buy land for temporarily shelters in Bangkok, Chiang Mai and Khon Kaen; quality of life development for the homeless; and a nationwide census to judge the actual scale of the problem so solutions can be found.

Economics, Society

You may like these posts

Gambling in Thailand — Underground Thai Lottery

Gambling in Thailand is for the most part illegal. Outside of the official Thai lottery, gambling on the outcome of events such as Muay Thai, football and cock-fighting are all il… Read more

Cock Fighting in Thailand — Thai Fighting Cocks

Cock fighting in Thailand is legal and very popular in many areas, particularly in the rural North/North East. On the other hand gambling is illegal in Thailand, save for the nati… Read more

How to Open a Thai Bank Account: A Foreigner’s Guide

A greater number of foreigners live in Thailand than anywhere else in Southeast Asia. Naturally then, there’s a strong demand for opening bank accounts here. Yet the rules have al… Read more

The Unexplained Phenomenon of Mekong Lights

This strange event happens yearly in late October to early November under a full moon sky. The lights are usually glowing red-orange balls rising out of the Mekong River. Hence, t… Read more

Getting Married to a Thai Bride — Customs and Traditions

Getting married to a Thai bride may well involve customs and traditions that seem a little alien to someone from the West. Thai brides and their families may well want to follow t… Read more

Thailand bans street liquor ‘yadong’ after toad venom deaths

After a particularly funky variant made with toad’s venom was blamed for two fatalities in Chonburi , the Excise Department on Friday said all yadong street stalls are illegal and… Read more

Massive tax hike coming for CO2-belching ‘big bikes’

Nutthakorn Utensute, director of the department’s Bureau of Tax Planning, said this weekend the Cabinet had acknowledged the tax hike for high-powered motorcycles based on CO2 emi… Read more

French couple survive attack by “killer wasps” but trekking guide is killed

A French man was out of hospital but his 59 year old wife was still in hospital in Chiang Rai. The attack happened on Saturday. Villagers in Pha Tai, Thaton informed the police … Read more

Thailand police officer arrested for allegedly stealing 50 service pistols

Police Senior Sgt-Major Charin Butrdee has been decommissioned and faces investigation for disciplinary misconduct, deputy police spokesman Pol Colonel Krisana Pattanajaroen said … Read more

Norwegian man Stein Arne Jensen, dies in South Pattaya condo fire

Police and forensic investigators rushed to the scene where firefighters were attempting to put out the blaze that reportedly started in room 3/319 A6 on 9th floor. Both water hos… Read more