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No Man's Land: Fighting for Fatherhood in a Broken System

Investigative Unit

Just as Mike’s baby is born, the mother is showing signs of delusional schizophrenia. When her destructive episodes escalate, she’s incarcerated and Mike and his baby daughter, Dani, are evicted from their apartment. Unable to work and care for his infant at the same time, Mike loses his job. He and Dani are suddenly homeless. Desperate for a safe place, he reaches out to homeless shelters but is repeatedly turned away.

For at least 20 years, we’ve been teaching our kids to be men, to be step up men.  Well, they’re stepping up. They’re doing what we’ve been asking them to do as society. But yet we’re not supporting them on that journey.

Colleen Berumen, Opportunity House

In NO MAN’S LAND, NBC Bay Area’s Investigative Unit uncovers systemic barriers putting families, like Mike and Dani, in danger by denying basic services to single fathers. Our team holds public officials accountable for a complex web of anti-male biases, racism and outdated rules that often shut these fathers out of housing, child care and even emergency shelter.


First, call 311 to access your local county services.

Single fathers, families and essential workers:

Emergency shelter resources :

Housing & formerly incarcerated resources:

Working parents and child care resources:

If you’re an essential worker or have a child with special needs, you may qualify for free child care in San Francisco.

Have a tip for investigative reporter Candice Nguyen?

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Source: NBC Bay Area

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