The number of children in the city’s shelter system has reached 19,000, according to a published report referencing recent city data.
"Not since the grim days of the Great Depression has New York City had 20,000 children sleeping homeless each night," Patrick Markee, senior policy analyst with the Coalition for the Homeless told the New York Daily News.
City stats show the total shelter population rose 17 percent in the last year, while the number of children rose by 18 percent, the News reports.
According to Mayor Bloomberg the number of homeless children increased because of the recession.
City Council Speaker Christine Quinn, a mayoral hopeful, supports using public housing apartments and federal housing vouchers to help the homeless get out of shelters.
Meanwhile, the city opened at least nine new shelters this summer, the News said.
"Since just May, more than 2,000 children have become homeless," Ralph da Costa Nunez, CEO of the Institute for Children, Poverty, and Homelessness told the News. "If the trend continues, we will surely see more than 20,000 children living in shelters by Christmas — a gift that nobody wants."