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Created with Fabric.js 1.4.5 Bettering Outcomes For The Homeless Population: Keeping Families Together By: Melissa Rae TippettsSWK-S 251Indiana University-Thunder Ducks- How many homeless people have children? - 60% of homeless women & 41% of homeless men have minor children. - Only 28% of homeless parents live with their children. - Among those children living with a homeless parent, 80% are under 11 years of age. (Fertig & Reingold, 2008) (p. 486) Structural - Lack of affordable housing- Slack labor markets- Welfare reform- Availability of public housing- Access to homeless shleters Characteristics of Homelessness Cultural - Deteriorating physical health- Issues with mental health- Substance abuse/ addiction- Domestic violence- Single motherhood- Issues with educational attainment (Fertig & Reingold, 2008) (p. 488) (Fertig & Reingold, 2008) (p. 487) Did You Know? "Many families do not earn adequate wages. Of the 24 million US jobs, one-fifth of all jobs do not keep a family of four out of poverty. Although the federal minimum wage increased to $7.25 per hour, this still leaves a single full-time wage earner living below the Federal Poverty Line." (The Characteristics and Needs of Families Experiencing Homelessness, 2011) Georgia's Info "The term homeless may also include peoplewhose primary night-time residence is in ahomeless shelter, a warming center, a domestic violence shelter or other ad hoc housing situation(s)." (King's Info) (Slide 2) Fathers Fathers "The potential protective effects that fathers provide against homelessness can be viewedas a form of informal social support. Findingsprovide additional evidence that informal socialsupport explains why some poor families becomehomeless and others do not, particularly in the first year after a birth." (Fertig & Reingold, 2008) (p. 505) Impacts of Homelessness on Children Foster Care "At least 30% of children in foster care could return home if their parents had access to housing." "Homeless children are at a particularly high risk for being placed in foster care. 12% of homeless children have been placed in foster care, compared to 1% of other children." (The National Center on Family Homelessness, 2011) Family Separation "Families who have experienced homelessnesshave much higher rates of family separationcompared to other low-income families." "55% of the cities surveyed by the US Conference of Mayorsreport that families may have to break up in order to be sheltered." "Other families separate due to the stress of the experience. Families may send their children to stay with relatives in order to avoid shelter life. One-fifth of homeless children are separated from their immediate family at some point." (The National Center on Family Homelessness, 2011) Developmental Milestones Mental Health - Homeless children have 3x the rate of emotional & behavioral problems- 1 in 6 have emotional disturbances - 47% have problems such as anxiety, depression, & withdrawal- 36% manifest delinquent or aggressive behavior - Homeless children are sick 4x more often than other children- They have 2x ear infections- 4x as many respiratory infections- 5x more gastrointestinal problems- 2x as likely to have asthma "Children experiencing homelessness are 4x more likely to show delayed development.They also have 2x the rate of learning disabilities as non-homeless children." Physical Health (The National Center on Family Homelessness, 2011) INDIANA Child Homelessness in Indiana "Overall, Indiana ranks #30 (out of 50) as the "best" state to live in for homeless children, putting it in the bottom half." "In 2010-2011, there were an estimated 27,127 homeless children in Indiana. In 2012-2013, that number grew to 31,843." State Policy & Planning Housing Units for Homeless Families - 585 emergency shelters- 716 transitional housing units- 346 permanent supportive housing units "In Indiana, there is an active state Interagency Council on Homelessness (ICH). However, there is not a state plan that includes children & families." "As of 2013, no statewide planning efforts had taken place in Indiana." (The National Center on Family Homelessness at American Institutes for Research) BLOOMINGTON, IN The Mayor Mayor Kruzan of Bloomington, Indiana does not advocate for homelessness. "He opposes extending the season of the Interfaith Winter Shelter& refuses to allow shelter residents to use places under the city's jurisdictionsuch as vacant lots or empty city-owned buildings when the shelteris closed. Kruzan claims that shelters like Interfaith "encourage" homelessindividuals from other communities to come to Bloomington." (Alison's Info) (Slide 3) Concerns About Existing Shelters "The East side church in Bloomingtonis one shelter available for homeless people to use. However, issues within that shelter include:- Guests being mistreated by volunteers- Lack of public transportation to the shelter- Shelter availability- Shelter location- Inadequate food resources" (Kaylie's Info) (Slide 6) Issues with Low-Barrier Shelters "Low-barrier shelters do not generally accept families,unless its an emergency situation. Since low-barriershelters do not require tenants to provide criminalrecords, this in turn can put children in danger." (Hannah's Info) (Help Homeless Children & Youth Now, 2014) Analysis of Policies found in Family Shelters "In homeless policy making, the absence of a family perspective that addresses prevention as well as short- and long-term interventionmay result in policies and programs that have negative effects on family life." Recommendations by Anderson & Koblinsky (1995) for creating effective policy:- Recognize diversity among families- Recognize interdependence among family members- Build social support networks- Strengthen neighborhoods & communities (Anderson & Koblinsky, 1995) (Anderson & Koblinsky, 1995) (Sarah's Info) REFERENCES REFERENCES Anderson, E.A., & Koblinsky, S.A. (1995) HOMELESS POLICY: THE NEED TO SPEAK TO FAMILIES. Family Relations, 44 (1), pp. 13-18. Fertig, A. & Reingold, D. (2008) Homelessness among At-Risk Families with Children in Twenty American Cities. Social Service Review, Vol. 82, No. 3 (September 2008), pp. 485-510. Help Homeless Children and Youth Now! (n.d.) Help Homeless Children and Youth Now! Tell Congress to Pass the Homeless Children and Youth Act. Retrieved from Indiana (n.d.) America's Youngest Outcasts: A Report Card on Child Homelessness. The National Center on Family Homelessness at American Institutes for Research. Retrieved from The Characteristics and Needs of Families Experiencing Homelessness (2011). The National Center on Family Homelessness. Retrieved November, 13, 2014, from 12/3/2014 CONCLUSION Retrieved from All over the country, families experiencing homelessness are likely to be broken-up. Fathers are generally separated from their childrenand the consequences can negatively impact that family for the rest of their lives. Keeping families together will not only increase thechance that the family will escape homelessness, it also provides strength factors for the children. Those strength factors decreasethe likelihood of those children experiencing the mental and physical impairments that can be increased by being homeless.Moreover, it is important for policy makers to realize that keeping families together is vital to their well-being and the well-being of society. It has been concluded that families experiencing homelessness are likely to be broken-up. Generally, the father is separated from his children. The consequences of that can negatively impact the family for the rest of their lives. Keeping families together increases the chance thatthose families will eventually escape homelessness. The "informal social support" provided by fathers has been provento be a protective factor against homelessness. (Fertig & Reingold, 2008) (p. 505) A child experiencing homelessness will be more traumatized by being separated from their father or mother. That trauma increases the riskfor mental and physical impairments brought on by homelessness and poverty. It is important for policy makers to focus on keeping homelessfamilies together, to increase the well-being of the children, their family, and society as a whole.
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