Homelessness describes the condition of people without a regular dwelling. People who are homeless are most often unable to acquire and maintain regular, safe, secure, and adequate housing, or lack "fixed, regular, and adequate night-time residence."
Unavailability of employment opportunities.
Poverty, caused by many factors including unemployment and underemployment.
Lack of accessible healthcare. People who have some kind of chronic and weakening disease but cannot get healthcare either because they don't have money to afford it or because the government will not give it to them are simply too weak to go and work every day.
Abuse by government or by other people with power.
War or armed conflict.
Mental disorder, where mental health services are unavailable or difficult to access. A United States Federal survey done in 2005 indicated that at least one-third of homeless men and women have serious psychiatric disorders or problems.
Disability, especially where disability services are non-existent or poor performing.
Social exclusion, including because of sexual orientation and gender identity
Relationship breakdown, particularly in relation to young people and their parents.
Prison release and re-entry into society.
Disasters, including but not limited to earthquakes and hurricanes.
The basic problem of homelessness is the need for personal shelter, warmth and safety. Other difficulties include:
personal security, quiet, and privacy, especially for sleeping
safekeeping of bedding, clothing and possessions, which may have to be carried at all times
hygiene and sanitary facilities
cleaning and drying of clothes
obtaining, preparing and storing food in quantities
keeping contacts, without a permanent location or mailing address
hostility and legal powers against urban vagrancy.
Homeless people face many problems beyond the lack of a safe and suitable home....
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