Homelessness

stresses poor andrew cumming

Andrew Cummins
Age: 43
Hometown: Jeffersonville, Ind.

Andrew and Kristen Cummins and their 8-year-old son Colton have been in and out of homelessness for the past four years.

It all started when Andrew moved to Indiana for a temporary warehouse job that was supposed to turn into a full-time job. But instead he said he was let go as soon as the company would have had to start providing him with full-time benefits.

Since then, he has worked at several other temporary jobs that haven't turned into full-time work either.

Kristen has been in the same position: She has also had temporary jobs, but nothing has stuck.

So for now, the three stay at a local homeless shelter called the Haven House. Since women and men are required to sleep in separate areas, Andrew doesn't get to see his wife or son after 9 p.m. each night.

This puts a strain on Kristen, since their son suffers from severe attention deficit-hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and she could use Andrew's help putting him to bed.

Watch: Voices of the homeless

With the constant noise and commotion everywhere, the shelter is also a bad environment for Colton, especially when it comes to doing his homework.

Each time Andrew secures a temporary job, he moves the family out of the shelter and into a motel so that they can be together. But when the job doesn't last, it's back to the shelter.

What's your biggest stress? "Not being together. We need stability. I'm thankful we have a roof over our head, but it's still so hard."

What keeps you going? "Just the goal that I can one day get an apartment for us."

First published June 24, 2014: 10:55 AM ET

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