Apparently, living in a trash can doesn’t count as homeless anymore.
A neon pink puppet named Lily will be the first ever homeless character featured in Sesame Street. Her first appearance was in a 2011 episode where she talked about her family not having enough to eat.
Apparently, Lily’s life got worse over the past 7 years. She explains that she is now living with some friends because she has no home of her own anymore.
Sesame Workshop put out their reasoning for this character in their press release:
“The rate of young children who do not have a permanent place to live has been steadily growing. More than 2.5 million children are experiencing homelessness nationwide—and nearly half of those children, 1.2 million, are under the age of six. According to the Office of Head Start, there has been a 100 percent increase in enrollment of children experiencing homelessness in Head Start and Early Head Start programs over the past decade, with 2016-17 marking a record number.”
With the addition of this character, hopefully kids will be able to relate to the character or show more sympathy to other children that face similar issues.