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To meet the growing need to shelter the homeless, the Bloomberg Administration has been using its power of emergency authority to create shelters as quickly as possible, bypassing the typical community approval process. Unlike in other cities, New York is required by law to provide shelter to every person who seeks it. Ten new homeless shelters in recent months, in places that include the Upper West Side. Every night, 46,000 people seek shelter, the highest number ever recorded. New York City makes up 14 percent of the nation's homeless, with Los Angeles a distant second at 3 percent.

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Over a fifth of New Yorkers live in poverty, according to new Census numbers. The city's poverty rate jumped from 20.1 percent in 2010 to 20.9 percent in 2011, which equals 74,000 people. That's the third year in a row the rate increased. The national average is 15.9 percent. The numbers are at odds with job recovery reports. Unemployment has also risen, despite job growth. The poverty rate is at its highest in over 10 years, and the income gap between the rich and poor continues to grow. Meanwhile, a new report finds that low-income smokers statewide spend 25 percentof their income on cigarettes.

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