TORONTO – Would you notice your own family members if they were living on the street or have the homeless become invisible?
A new social experiment hopes to make people think twice before they walk past homeless people.
The ‘Make them Visible’ campaign had actors made up to appear as though they had been living on the streets. A hidden camera was set up to capture if unsuspecting relatives who walked by would recognize their loved ones.
The campaign says that not a single participant was recognized by their spouse, sibling, cousin or other relative.
“There’s only one person that didn’t make it into the film — because they couldn’t handle the fact that they walked by their family,” said video director Jun Diaz who helped produce the experiment for the New York Rescue Mission. “It happened every time.”
The family members, who did not know they were set up, were shown their reactions afterward – many of whom were shocked and overwhelmed.
On social media, while many applauded the efforts to bring attention to an important social issue, some people argued that it would be difficult to recognize family members if they only had a “quick glance” at them as they walked by the street.
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© Shaw Media, 2014