Tracking the Homeless: Good or Bad Idea?

By next year, North Carolina will begin a database on the homeless population across our state. The North Carolina Housing Coalition is now developing a database that will be shared between soup kitchens, homeless shelters, treatment centers, and other non-profit organizations. The idea is to not only keep up with the number of homeless, but to provide these organizations with information that could help them improve their services. But officials with the Real Crisis Center in Greenville say some victims of domestic violence are concerned that too much personal information could end up in the wrong hands. Nevertheless some homeless shelters think the database is a good idea. Mary Smith, the Executive Director of the Real Crisis Center, doesn't believe the information gathered will harm domestic violence victims. She says people who need to get to the information will have passwords and the information collected will mainly deal with age, gender and other demographic figures.