Homeless in Paris

Paris, October 2011

The Homeless. Families with children, single adults, elderly individuals and youth, all experience homelessness. People at night gathering the Chatelet for free coffee, who sleep in the subway, in corridors, porches, under bridges, or wherever they can find any shelter.


The problems of the homeless, SDF (sans domicile fixe) in France, persist to this day. Especially in Paris the problems are huge. An organization like ‘Compagnons d’Emmaus’ founded by Abbé Pierre is over half a century old and is helping the poor and homeless by selling used and recycled goods.


Some years ago ‘Les Enfants de Don Quichotte’ has set up tents in various areas in Paris and invited people to come and spend a night outside in a tent, to make them aware of the misery the homeless experience every single day. Recently a group of people with similar concerns as the ‘Compagnons d’Emmaus’ supported by the opposition, forced the French government to come up with proposals and concrete action to solve the problems for those living in the open.

© Rene Sommer

France, the country of Liberté, Egalité et Fraternité which likes to claim that it laid the foundation for universal human rights is denying basic rights, like the right to a decent lodging to many of its own citizens.

Paris, October 2011