Most are working at low wage jobs such as construction, maintenance, waiting tables and janitorial, that do not provide affordable health insurance.
24,000 are military veterans.
Many have worked at hard manual labor for decades, are no longer physically able to work full time, but are not yet old enough for Medicare.
They live in or near poverty (incomes less than $16,300 for one person or $22,000 for a couple).
In spite of low income, they cannot qualify for TennCare (which generally only covers families with children, people over 65 or some people found disabled by Social Security)