Anderson Cooper and Candace, president of Detroit's Homeless Action Network

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Candace, the president of Detroit's Homeless Action Network, says that there are more than 10,000 people living on the streets of Detroit every night—the majority of whom are single moms.

"Most of them are not addicted to any substance," Candace says. "They are not mentally ill. They lost the house because they lost their job."

For many poor families, all it takes is one missed paycheck or one bad day to send them over the edge.

"You know, lots of people make mistakes in their lives," Oprah says. "They get a break, and you get another chance, and you get another chance. But when you're poor, one strike, and you're out."

"When you don't have money in the bank, and when you don't have a family who loves you or who can care for you, the only place to fall back on is the street," Anderson says. "And the street is pretty damn hard."
FROM: Oprah Special Report: Inside the Lives of America's Poor
Published on October 12, 2005