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Homeless Youth. Homelessness Definition Having no fixed place to sleep at night Having no fixed place to sleep at night.

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Presentation on theme: "Homeless Youth. Homelessness Definition Having no fixed place to sleep at night Having no fixed place to sleep at night."— Presentation transcript:

1 Homeless Youth

2 Homelessness Definition Having no fixed place to sleep at night Having no fixed place to sleep at night

3 Definitions of the Homeless Absolutely homeless: individuals and families who sleep in outdoor or indoor places not intended for human habitation (street, parks, abandoned buildings) Absolutely homeless: individuals and families who sleep in outdoor or indoor places not intended for human habitation (street, parks, abandoned buildings) Lacking permanent housing: staying in temporary accommodations (emergency shelters, treatment programs, with family) Lacking permanent housing: staying in temporary accommodations (emergency shelters, treatment programs, with family) At risk of homelessness: individuals and families whose current housing is unaffordable for them, unsafe, or inappropriate – may require supports to maintain appropriate housing At risk of homelessness: individuals and families whose current housing is unaffordable for them, unsafe, or inappropriate – may require supports to maintain appropriate housing

4 Degree of Homelessness One-time homelessness: the result of an unexpected event ( employment loss, eviction, family breakdown One-time homelessness: the result of an unexpected event ( employment loss, eviction, family breakdown Episodic: periods of housing stability interspersed with periods of housing instability and homelessness Episodic: periods of housing stability interspersed with periods of housing instability and homelessness Chronic: a person who has spent more than 60 cummulative nights in the past year in an emergency shelter and has reach the point where he/she lacks the physical or mental health, skills or income to access and to mainatin housing Chronic: a person who has spent more than 60 cummulative nights in the past year in an emergency shelter and has reach the point where he/she lacks the physical or mental health, skills or income to access and to mainatin housing

5 Chronic Homelessness Chronic: a person who has spent more than 60 cumulative nights in the past year in an emergency shelter and/or on the street and has reach the point where he/she lacks the physical or mental health, skills or income to access and to maintain housing Chronic: a person who has spent more than 60 cumulative nights in the past year in an emergency shelter and/or on the street and has reach the point where he/she lacks the physical or mental health, skills or income to access and to maintain housing

6 Causes of Homelessness Mental Health Issues: between 30 and 67% of homeless people have some kind of mental illness Mental Health Issues: between 30 and 67% of homeless people have some kind of mental illness Addiction and Substance Abuse Issues: there is a larger number of homeless people with addictive disorders, however most drug and alcohol abusers don’t become homeless Addiction and Substance Abuse Issues: there is a larger number of homeless people with addictive disorders, however most drug and alcohol abusers don’t become homeless It is those people with low incomes and these disorders that may find themselves homeless It is those people with low incomes and these disorders that may find themselves homeless

7 Violence against youth: particularly against girls and young women Violence against youth: particularly against girls and young women Most homeless youth have histories of family instability, conflict and abuse Most homeless youth have histories of family instability, conflict and abuse More young women then men have experienced sexual and physical abuse within their own families More young women then men have experienced sexual and physical abuse within their own families Domestic abuse: many individuals using emergency shelters are fleeing domestic violence Domestic abuse: many individuals using emergency shelters are fleeing domestic violence

8 Youth Disruptive family conditions Disruptive family conditions Life on the street seems like a better alternative Life on the street seems like a better alternative Physical, psychological sexual abuse, abandonment or neglect Physical, psychological sexual abuse, abandonment or neglect Marriage breakdown – youth not wanted (remember George?) Marriage breakdown – youth not wanted (remember George?)

9 Residential instability Residential instability Over young Canadians run away from home each year Over young Canadians run away from home each year Over 90% return home within 60 days, but the remaining 10% become homeless Over 90% return home within 60 days, but the remaining 10% become homeless

10 Financial crisis: Financial crisis: Leave home to work and live independently but then unable to return home after the loss of a job etc Leave home to work and live independently but then unable to return home after the loss of a job etc

11 What Happens? Youth live day to day – unable to develop plans for their lives Youth live day to day – unable to develop plans for their lives Education is often disrupted – the prospect of returning to school difficult Education is often disrupted – the prospect of returning to school difficult Homeless youth find themselves engaging in risky lifestyles, just to ‘get by’ Homeless youth find themselves engaging in risky lifestyles, just to ‘get by’ This includes drug dealing, prostitution This includes drug dealing, prostitution Their own health is compromised – many become drug users themselves, HIV rates are higher, sexually transmitted disease rate high Their own health is compromised – many become drug users themselves, HIV rates are higher, sexually transmitted disease rate high

12 According to doctors in Montreal: street youth have a mortality rate 13 times higher than other youth According to doctors in Montreal: street youth have a mortality rate 13 times higher than other youth High rate of drug use is a coping strategy for dealing with the pain in their lives High rate of drug use is a coping strategy for dealing with the pain in their lives

13 How Many in Ottawa? It is very difficult to find an exact number, However: It is very difficult to find an exact number, However: In 2007: In 2007: Emergency shelters accommodated 7,573 people, including: Emergency shelters accommodated 7,573 people, including: 3,861 single men 3,861 single men 1,173 single women 1,173 single women 505 youths 505 youths 639 families ( 797 adults and 1,237 children) 639 families ( 797 adults and 1,237 children) (Source: Community action Plan on Homelessness) (Source: Community action Plan on Homelessness)

14 What’s to be done? This is a very complicated issue This is a very complicated issue There is no ‘magic’ bullet that can solve the issues There is no ‘magic’ bullet that can solve the issues A multi-organization approach must be taken A multi-organization approach must be taken Both for services for people who are currently homeless and for the prevention of other people Both for services for people who are currently homeless and for the prevention of other people Within the city of Ottawa ( show continuum of housing and support services) Within the city of Ottawa ( show continuum of housing and support services)

15 Homework Read pg 150/151 and make notes on how the theoretical perspectives discuss the reasons for homelessness Read pg 150/151 and make notes on how the theoretical perspectives discuss the reasons for homelessness Read the point of view article on pg 148/149 and answer questions on pg. 149 Read the point of view article on pg 148/149 and answer questions on pg. 149 Answer question #4 on page 156 Answer question #4 on page 156


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