Montana Public Radio

Human Resource Development Council

The coronavirus pandemic has exacerbated poverty and economic inequality in Montana. Several Bozeman residents recently shared their struggles in trying to meet basic needs and navigate complicated safety nets.

During a virtual event hosted by Montana No Kid Hungry and the Human Resource Development Council, panelist Lori Lindgren says living in poverty feels like trying to catch a run away train.

“When you’re poor, you’re always behind and you’re trying to catch up,” Lindgren said.

A snapshot of homelessness in the U.S. for 01/31/2019.
U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development

Montana Gov. Steve Bullock extended the state’s stay-at-home directive for today until April 24. But that’s no easy ask for people with nowhere to isolate. Nick Mott reports on what the pandemic means for people experiencing homelessness in Montana.

A non-profit organization that serves more than 12,000 people in southwest Montana is updating its community needs assessment. It helps determine which projects get the green light and affects how millions of dollars are allocated. Communities across Park, Gallatin and Meagher Counties identified affordable housing as one of the top priorities in the last assessment three years ago.

An organization in Bozeman recently received half-a-million dollars to jumpstart Montana’s first tiny home village for people facing chronic homelessness.

theHRDC.org / theHRDC.org

In recent years, Montana’s fastest-growing city, Bozeman, has also seen a rise in the number of people who are homeless. Expensive housing and stagnant wages may be to blame.