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At the beginning of the homelessness epidemic in the 1980s, Josephine Ensign was a young, white, Southern, Christian wife, mother, and nurse running a medical clinic for the homeless in the heart of the South. Through her work and intense relationships with patients and co-workers, her worldview was shattered after losing her job, family, and house—and she became homeless herself. Ensign joins us decades later to tell her story through her book Catching Homelessness: A Nurse’s Story of Falling Through the Safety Net. With intense empathy and deep human perspective, she highlights the ways her experience of being homeless reconstituted her life with altered views on homelessness and on the healthcare system. Ensign provides a piercing firsthand look at the homelessness industry, nursing, and our country’s health care safety net. Join Ensign as she reflects on how her understanding of homelessness has changed her work, perspective, and life experiences—and changed her.
Presented by Town Hall Seattle and the League of Women Voters.