Homelessness in America

Topics: Homelessness, Poverty, Homelessness in the United States Pages: 13 (4718 words) Published: October 28, 2008
Each country in the world is faced with various social issues that attract the interest of numerous stakeholders. And when society is faced with such social issues the general citizenly come together and try to resolve whatever issue is at hand. In certain social issue society generally feel like it is their responsibility to assist certain population of the citizens that has been determined as needy however they has been some social problems that have been existence in America that have not been fully or never completely resolved. The number of people that are being pushed on the streets for various reasons has been steadily increasing. Homelessness has been a long time America’s social problem. The word homelessness has been in use in America for about 150 years. Nevertheless there has been no clear cut generally accepted definition for homelessness. There have been many different definitions with characteristically criteria used by the various interest groups in trying to serve or screen and decide who to provide support for. Arnold points out that “The literature about homelessness can be summed up under the two broad categories: of conservative or progressive interpretations” (116).

The vagrancy law and the modern anti-homeless policies strive to end this long lasting social challenge. The desire for control and claims of peace and order are often what leads to the creation of statutes aimed at the very weak of society. Moreover most of the laws and statutes are supported by both bureaucrats and the average citizen. The need for response to the increase numbers of the homeless is what triggers the support of city ordinances to control the actions and behavior on the street. However when ordinances are enacted the analysis as Amster concludes, cities enact the ordinances to promote public safety pedestrians congestion and public health. The consequences of the ordinances on the homeless however are it self a violation of the public safety and respect to individual personal belongings (145). Homelessness is a social challenge that requires the identification of who is homeless; implementation of public policy and changes in the public perception of the homeless people. There are numerous causes of homelessness and particularly there an ever increasing group of the population that is facing the problem.

The social welfare of women and children living on the street is of much concern; they are very venerable to many dangers of living on the street. This category of the homeless is subject to various forms of abuse physical and sexual. William states that the poverty level these women endure is what leads to the crisis. The trend is irreversible and they will continue to be the ever growing percentage of the homeless population (13). Moreover there are other various scenarios that drive women to enter the homeless and battered women’s shelters. It takes a long time for a woman to enter a shelter; it is after the build up of these causes that a woman decides to enter an institution. William further discusses domestic violence as a cause of homelessness in women. Domestic violence has been associated with causing homelessness among American women. These women seek shelters for physical protection. These women moreover hide from their abusive partners for fear of continued abuse if their partners know where they are living. Case workers understand that domestic violence takes in the form of physical, emotional, verbal and sexual abuse. The refusal by battered women to visit or be associated with their abusive partners is proof that these women require physical protection. Women have been subjected to abuse from spouses, boyfriends, parents and other relatives. Women that seek emergency shelters have usually been battered and more likely to come from poor or poverty stricken homes. It is in deed saddening to note that most of the homeless studies have failed to resolve the role of domestic violence in women’s...

Bibliography: Amster, Randall. Street People And The Contested Realms of Public Space. LFB
Scholarly Publication LLC: New York, 2004.
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