Nowhere to Go

Americans priced out of housing increasingly land in jail, in court or in tents on the street. As we shelter in place, they have nowhere to go.

A First Amendment right to feed?

A constitutional clash between a religious belief in feeding the hungry and a city food-sharing ban.

In Ocala, strict policing pushes the homeless out of sight

A federal lawsuit alleges draconian measures in Ocala, Florida, to address homelessness are not only discriminatory but unconstitutional.

Arkansas jail releases inmates, dozens of them homeless, amid COVID-19

The Washington County Detention Center — one of the largest jails in Arkansas — released a third of its inmates, including some homeless detainees, over a 10-day span to reduce the risk of a COVID-19 outbreak behind bars.

Homeless bills of rights are a new iteration of anti-discrimination laws

Many states have passed, or are considering, laws protecting homeless people from discrimination.

Felons are struggling for housing and jobs in Northwest Arkansas

For some, getting released from incarceration means getting to go home to their families. For others, it means a new sentence to homelessness, unemployment and missed opportunities.

Drug evictions create obstacles to housing the homeless

Experts say trouble is brewing in Martinsburg, West Virginia, because of a city law called the “drug house ordinance.”

In many cities, it’s illegal to beg for food or money

It’s illegal to sleep on a park bench. It’s illegal to stand in one place for too long. In hundreds of American cities, it’s a crime to be homeless.

CDC says no to clearing encampments during coronavirus outbreak

People living in outdoor homeless encampments should not be evicted during the outbreak of the novel coronavirus unless they can be moved to individual housing units, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommended.

Growing Up Behind Bars

The United States was the only country to condemn minors to life in prison with no chance for parole. In recent years the Supreme Court has ruled this unconstitutional. Yet more than 2,000 so-called juvenile lifers remain in prison in what the court says is cruel and unusual punishment.

Supreme Court Decisions

Beginning in 2005, the Court overturned many of the harshest policies aimed at juveniles.

Michigan and Florida Go Different Routes

Both states had large numbers of juveniles sentenced to life without parole. Both have hit speed bumps as they try to respond to the Supreme Court.

Parole In The Hands Of Governors

In most states parole commissions decide who should be released. Only three require the governor to sign paroles. Each state has handled the court’s rulings differently.

Pennsylvania’s About-Face

In the Keystone State more than 500 juveniles served sentences of life without parole. Today many of them have been resentenced, many to time served.

Meet The Juvenile Lifers

Earl Young and Calvin McNeill went to prison determined to win parole. They have spent a combined 72 years behind bars.

The Victims’ Side

Juvenile lifers have committed horrible crimes that have stolen loved ones from their families. How do we deal with their pain?

The Glendening Effect

Former Gov. Parris Glendening’s “life means life” policy changes criminal sentences for hundreds of prisoners. It is a decision he calls “a mistake,” but its impact continues to this day.

Code Red: Baltimore’s Climate Divide

Urban heat islands vividly illustrate the price humans will pay in the world’s growing climate crisis. With an abundance of concrete and little shade, they get hotter faster and stay hotter longer. And the people who live there are often sicker, poorer and less able to protect themselves.

About The Howard Center

The Howard Center for Investigative Journalism, launched in 2019, gives University of Maryland Philip Merrill College of Journalism students the opportunity to work with news organizations across the country to report stories of national or international importance to the public. The multidisciplinary program is focused on training the next generation of reporters through hands-on investigative journalism projects. The Howard Center is generously funded by $3 million from the Scripps Howard Foundation. It honors Roy W. Howard, one of the newspaper world’s most dynamic personalities. He became president of the United Press when he was 29 and 10 years later was named chairman of the board of Scripps Howard. He retired in 1953 but remained active in the company until his death at age 81 in 1964.



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Contact The Howard Center

Kathy Best, Director
Phone: 301-405-8808
Twitter @kbest

Sean Mussenden, Data editor
Email: smussend@umd.edu