The recent recession has taken its toll on many people throughout our country. This is something that Prince and Charlomane Leonard know all too well. Before the recession hit, the family was doing all right but three years ago they were forced to move out of their home and into a self-storage unit with their kids.
Yes, they moved into a storage unit. The storage facility, located in Houston, though an unorthodox home base, served the family well until the Texas Child Protective Services (CPS) stepped in. The system removed the six kids, ages 2-12, from their parents.
The storage unit, at a glance, is a makeshift little apartment complete with AC, beds, a tub, a fridge, microwave, and two computers. The main problem is running water – the storage unit just doesn’t have it. This is one reason why CPS stepped in. Instead of a regular toilet, the family used a compost toilet. Their water for washing is kept in a 55-gallon drum which Prince refills daily while they get their drinking water at a local grocery store.
CPS took the children the very day that they made their first visit to the family’s storage unit. The kids were placed with Charlomane’s parents and she and Prince are able to see them only 6 hours per week. A hearing is scheduled for August 16.
The family argues that they haven’t done anything wrong except fall on hard times. Just prior to the recession they had saved up enough money to buy 50 acres of land on which they were going to build a house and move in. They are waiting for a USDA loan.
We wish them the best of luck.