Feb 122008

The last three days, the Collegian printed a series of stories on Fort Collins’ homeless life, touching on social, political and moral issues that inject poverty into some people’s lives.

We felt the reason this issue is relevant to college students is that it affects people in our age demographic — the main source for the series is 27, just as are many students at CSU.

Experts say our generation will deal with the ramifications if nothing is done to quell the problem.

“It’s like global warming and climate change,” said Valerie Baker-Easley, executive director of the Homeless Prevention Initiative. “If we’re not taking care of the environment, the next generation shoulders those problems. If you stem the poverty problem, you won’t have to pass it on.”

In the second piece of the series, our reporter involved himself heavily in the life of his main source, James Schumacher, who, since arriving on the Front Range, has “been through hell,” he said.

The reporter started out writing the story for a class, but he decided it was important for our paper.

Originally, he had offered to help James in his quest to get an ID, an attempt that ultimately failed because the system to attain ID is so convoluted.

We, as a college paper, thought it a perfect opportunity to dabble in advocacy journalism — when a newspaper drops objectivity and tells a story from their point of view.

We also felt it was necessary to frame the story this way to be transparent in our promotion of James’ attempt to get an ID and ultimately find a home.

 Posted by at 5:00 pm

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