"Homelessness is the condition of people without a permanent dwelling, such as a house or apartment. People who are homeless are most often unable to acquire and maintain regular, safe, secure and adequate housing. The legal definition of homeless varies from country to country, or among different jurisdictions in the same country or region. The term homelessmay also include people whose primary night-time residence is in a homeless shelter, a domestic violence shelter, long-term residence in a motel, a vehicle, squatting, cardboard boxes, a tent city, tarpaulins, shanty town structures made of discarded building materials or other ad hoc housing situations. United States government homeless enumeration studies also include people who sleep in a public or private place not designed for use as a regular sleeping accommodation for human beings."
-- Wikipedia: "Homelessness"
from December, 2016 literature review and commentary [Kertesz et al 2016]:
"Advocates for ending homelessness have increasingly turned to a financial argument, claiming that permanent supportive housing will deliver net cost savings to society." "We believe the cost-savings argument is problematic and that it would be better to reframe the discussion to focus primarily on the best way to meet this population’s needs." "Higher-quality randomized, controlled trials...haven’t demonstrated net cost savings." "Staking the future of Housing First on the expectation that it will save money could undermine efforts to deliver an effective intervention to the majority of the population it’s intended to serve."
[Baxter et al 2019]:
"the data included in this review were exclusively from North America and the participants were all selected on the basis of complex health needs (such as mental illness, substance abuse or chronic physical illness) as per the principles of HF.16 17 This may limit the generalisability of our findings internationally, as well as to homeless people without complex health needs."
"Our systematic review found that HF resulted in large improvements in housing stability; with unclear short-term impact on health and well-being outcomes. For mental health, quality of life and substance use, no clear differences were seen when compared with TAU [Treatment As Usual].. HF participants showed a clear reduction in non-routine use of healthcare services, over TAU. This may be an indicator of improvements in health."
"Housing First approaches do not appear to consistently improve or harm health in the short-term, but long-term impacts are unknown."
Writings / work by the homeless
International Network of Street Papers
Homeless-run newspapers (street paper):
StreetRoots, Portland; and 100+ other cities.
Israel Bayer of Portland, longtime editor of Street Roots, is now working for INSP to launch a North American Bureau.
Faces of Homelessness Speakers’ Bureau
a program of the National Coalition for the Homeless
Invisible People / Mark Horvath
a resident of coastal Washington State, Doreen has a background in urban studies and housing, and lived experience with homelessness, offers writing/editing services (see About page) and publishes about homelessness and related issues online in various places, including:
- The Genevieve Files: http://genevievefiles.blogspot.com
- San Diego Homeless Survival Guide
- What Helps The Homeless
- Street Life Solutions
- Pocket Puter
Note from Doreen:
"Here's another blog by a homeless person (I have read only part of one page, no clue how good most of it is)
https://nilskidoo.blackblogs.org/throwing-stones-at-the-mossbacks-gathered/." [page not loading when we tried it 11 Sept 2019].
- Baxter AJ, Tweed EJ, Katikireddi SV, et al [Baxter 2019]. "Effects of Housing First approaches on health and well-being of adults who are homeless or at risk of homelessness: systematic review and meta-analysis of randomised controlled trials." J Epidemiol Community Health 2019;73:379-387.
- Canadian Observatory on Homelessness (COH). “Canadian Definition of Homelessness.” 2012, revised 2017.
- Corinth, K., 2017. “The impact of permanent supportive housing on homeless populations.”
Journal of Housing Economics 35: 69–84.
- Council of Economic Advisers. "The State of Homelessness in America." September 2019. https://www.whitehouse.gov/wp-content/uploads/2019/09/The-State-of-Homelessness-in-America.pdf.
- Evans, William N., David C. Philips, and Krista J. Ruffini. [Evans 2019] "Reducing and Preventing Homelessness: A Review of the Evidence and Charting a Research Agenda." Abdul Latif Jameel Poverty Action Lab / NBER Working Paper 26232, September 2019. http://www.nber.org/papers/w26232; https://drive.google.com/file/d/1sJ5FSfrtx5YE0i_AuacH7Yz_JNMOIfRn/view?usp=drivesdk.
- Goodman, S., P. Messeri, and B. O’Flaherty. 2017. “Homelessness prevention in New York City:
On average, it works.” Journal of Housing Economics 31: 14–34.
- Kertesz, S. G., and G. Johnson. 2017. “Housing First: Lessons from the United States and Challenges for Australia.” Australian Economic Review 50, no. 2: 220–28
- Kertesz, Stefan G. Kertesz, M.D., Travis P. Baggett, M.D., M.P.H., James J. O’Connell, M.D., David S. Buck, M.D., M.P.H., and Margot B. Kushel, M.D. "Permanent Supportive Housing for Homeless People — Reframing the Debate." New England Journal of Medicine 2016; 375:(article). https://dx.doi.org/10.1056/NEJMp1608326. Full text.
- Lucas, D. S. 2017. “The impact of federal homelessness funding on homelessness.” Southern Economic Journal 84, no. 2: 548–76.
"Federal spending on homelessness has increased significantly in recent years. I estimate the relationship between federal homelessness funding and homeless counts in 2011, 2013, and 2015 cross sections. I instrument for funding using a community’s pre-1940 housing share, a key variable in an originally unrelated funding formula borrowed for homelessness grants. Funding increases sheltered homelessness; meanwhile, funding is unrelated to unsheltered homelessness. Lower bound estimates suggest that the minimum cost of reducing unsheltered homelessness has increased over time, from $16,400 in 2011 to $20,800 in 2013 to $50,000 in 2015. In 2013, an additional $1 thousand dollars corresponds to a .309 higher homeless rate per 10,000 people. The effect is larger for families than individuals. Funding is positively related to chronic homelessness and is unrelated to youth and child homelessness. My results suggest limitations on federal funding’s ability to reduce homelessness among some of the most marginalized groups in society."
- Ly, A., and E. Latimer. 2015. “Housing first impact on costs and associated costs offsets: A review of the literature.” Canadian Journal of Psychiatry 60, no. 11: 475–87.
- Moulton, S. 2013. “Does increased funding for homeless programs reduce chronic
homelessness?” Southern Economic Journal 79, no. 3: 600–20.
- O’Flaherty, Brendan. 2019. “Homelessness Research: A Guide for Economists (and Friends).” Journal of Housing Economics 44 (2019): 1–25. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jhe.2019.01.003. Accepted manuscript: .
- Ortiz, Javier and Dick, Matthew and Rankin, Sara. "The Wrong Side of History: A Comparison of Modern and Historical Criminalization Laws." (May 4, 2015). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2602533 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2602533.
- Quigley, J. M., S. Raphael, S., and E. Smolensky. 2001. “Homeless in America, Homeless in California.” Review of Economics and Statistics 83, no. 1: 37–51.
- Seattle Weekly Editorial Board. “There’s Lots to Love About Mike O’Brien’s RV Ordinance.” Seattle Weekly, 16 Aug 2017. http://www.seattleweekly.com/news/theres-lots-to-love-about-mike-obriens-rv-ordinance/.
"The proposal forces a much needed conversation about those living in cars in Seattle."
- Sisson, Patrick. "Can real estate crowdfunding help the homelessness crisis?" Curbed, 22 Dec 2017.
[on Jolene’s First Cousin project in Portland which offers a new, community-supported strategy to tackle homelessness].
- Anderson, Nels. The hobo; the sociology of the homeless man (1923). Full text at Internet Archive.
- Blau, Joel. The Visible Poor: Homelessness in the United States (1992).
- Desmond, Matthew. Evicted: Poverty and Profit in the American City (2016). PDF. ePub.
- Ellen, Ingrid Gould, and Brendan O'Flaherty, Editors. How to House the Homeless (Russell Sage Foundation, 2010).
- Summary, Table of Contents, from publisher.
- Chapter 1: Introduction, by Ingrid Gould Ellen and Brendan O’Flaherty.
- PART I HELPING PEOPLE LEAVE HOMELESSNESS
- Chapter 2: "Service Models and Mental Health Problems: Cost-Effectiveness and Policy Relevance." by Robert Rosenheck. In Google Books: https://books.google.com/books?id=Gr5WAwAAQBAJ.
- Chapter 3 "Housing First: Ending Homelessness, Promoting Recovery, and Reducing Costs." by Sam Tsemberis. PDF.
- PART II USING HOUSING POLICY TO PREVENT HOMELESSNESS
- Chapter 6: "Housing Market Regulation and Homelessness." by Steven Raphael
- Chapter 5: "Fundamental Housing Policy Reforms to End Homelessness." by Edgar O. Olsen
- Chapter 4: "Rental Subsidies: Reducing Homelessness." by Jill Khadduri
- PART III MANAGING RISK
- Chapter 7: Homelessness as Bad Luck: Implications for Research and Policy." by Brendan O'Flahert
- Feldman, Leonard C. Citizens without Shelter: Homelessness, Democracy, and Political Exclusion. (Cornell University Press, 2006).
- Heben, Andrew. Tent City Urbanism: From Self-Organized Camps to Tiny House Villages (2012).
- Gowan, Teresa. Hobos, Hustlers, and Backsliders: Homeless in San Francisco. (University of Minnesota Press, 2010).
- Hailey, Charlie. Camps: A Guide to 21st-Century Space. (MIT Press, 2009).
- Hailey, Charlie . Campsite: Architectures of Duration and Place. 2008.
- Hopper, Kim. Reckoning With Homelessness. (Cornell University Press, 2002).
- Katz. The Undeserving Poor (1st edition 1989).
- Kerouac, Jack. "The Hobo in America", in Lonesome Traveller.
- Kusmer, Kenneth L.. Down and Out, on the Road: The Homeless in American History. Oxford University Press, 2001.
- Levinson, David, ed. Encyclopedia of Homelessness, 2004. http://1.droppdf.com/files/uMBPZ/encyclopedia-of-homelessness.pdf.
Almhouses: Poorhouses, Workhouses
Literature, Hobo and Tramp
"Shelter" entry by Kim Hopper, p.526-531
Literature on Homelessness: Appendix 1: Bibliography of Autobiographical and Fictional Accounts
Appendix 4: Documentary History of Homelessness
- London, Jack. The Road (1903).
- O'Flaherty, Brendan. The Economics of Homelessness (Harvard University Press,1998).
- Okin, Robert L. Silent Voices: People with Mental Disorders on the Street (2014).
- Piven, Francis, and Richard Cloward. Regulating the Poor: The Functions of Public Welfare (1956).
- Quigley, John M, Stephen Raphael, and Eugene Smolensky. "Homelessness in California." Public Policy Institute of California, 2001. http://www.ppic.org/publication/homelessness-in-california/.
- Rossi, Peter R. Down and Out in America. 1993.
- Willse, Craig. The Value of Homelessness: Managing Surplus Life in the United States. (University of Minnesota Press, 2015).