“Hobosexuals”: Exchanging Sex for Shelter

It’s time to re-think what homelessness looks like and how we help

In 2014, I met up with a friend on St. Thomas, USVI for lunch.

“You look like one of those ‘backpack girls’,” he told me as I arrived and sat across from him, storing my backpack under the table.

“What’s a ‘backpack girl’?” I asked.

He explained that women had been showing up on the island with nothing but a backpack, going to beaches and bars to chat up guys they could go home with and have a place to sleep.

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