A comparison of homeless men and women: Different populations, different needs
Rent the article at a discountRent now
* Final gross prices may vary according to local VAT.Get Access
Homeless women are very different from homeless men, but few studies have reported data separately on them or compared them directly with men. This report on a study of 600 homeless men and 300 homeless women in St. Louis presents comparison data on these populations. The pivotal difference between homeless men and women was that unlike men, most women had young children in their custody. The women were also younger than men, more likely to be members of a minority group, and more often dependent on welfare. They had been homeless for a shorter period and spent less time in unsheltered locations. Compared to men, they had less frequent histories of substance abuse, incarceration, and felony conviction. Solitary women (without children with them), compared to women with children in their custody, were more likely to be white, had been homeless longer, and more often had a history of alcoholism or schizophrenia. On most variables, values for solitary women lay some-where between those for men and for women with children. The population of homeless women is therefore heterogeneous, with at least two subgroups. These groups are likely to benefit from intervention programs that are designed to address their specific problems and needs, which are not necessarily the same as those of homeless men.
- Bassuk, E.L. & Rosenberg, L. (1988). Why does family homelessness occur? A case-control study.American Journal of Public Health, 78(7): 783–788.
- Bassuk, E.L. & Rosenberg, L. (1990). Psychosocial characteristics of homeless children and children with homes.Pediatrics, 85(3): 257–261.
- Bassuk, E.L., Rubin, L. & Lauriat, A.S. (1986). Characteristics of sheltered homeless families.American Journal of Public Health, 76(9): 1097–1101.
- Breakey, W.R., Fischer, P.J., Kramer, M., Nestadt, G., Romanoski, A. J., Ross, A., Royall, R.M. & Stine, O.C. (1989). Health and mental health problems of homeless men and women in Baltimore.The Journal of the American Medical Association, 262(10): 1352–1357.
- Burt, M.R. & Cohen, B.E. (1989). Differences among homeless single women, women with children, and single men.Social. Problems, 36(5): 508–524.
- Crystal, S. (1984). Homeless men and women: The gender gap.Urban and Social Change Review, 17: 2–6.
- Crystal, S., Ladner, S. & Towber, R. (1986). Multiple impairment patterns in the mentally ill homeless.International Journal of Mental Health, 14(4): 61–73.
- Fischer, P.J. & Breakey, W.R. (1986). Homelessness and Mental Health: An Overview.International Journal of Mental Health, 14(4): 6–41.
- Fischer, P.J. & Breakey, W.R. (1991). The Epidemiology of alcohol, drug, and mental disorders among homeless persons.American Psychologist, 46(11): 1115–1128.
- Fischer, P.J., Shapiro, S., Breakey, W.R., Anthony, J.C., & Kramer, M. (1986). Mental health and social characteristics of the homeless: A survey of mission users.American Journal of Public Health, 76(5): 519–524.
- Hagen, J.L. (1987). Gender and homelessness.Social Work, July–August: 312–316.
- Maurin, J.T., Russell, L. & Memmott, R.J. (1989). An exploration of gender differences among the homeless.Research in Nursing and Health, 12: 315–321.
- Milburn, N. & D'Ercole, A. (1991). Homeless women: Moving toward a comprehensive model.American Psychologist, 46(11): 1161–1169.
- Robins, L.N., Helzer, J.E., Croughan, J., Williams, J.B.W. & Spitzer, R.L. (1981). NIMH Diagnostic Interview Schedule: Version III (May 1981).National Institute of Mental Health.
- Rosnow, M.J., Shaw, T. & Concord, C.S. (1986). Listening to the homeless: A study of homeless mentally ill persons in Milwaukee.Psychosocial Rehabilitation Journal, 9: 64–77.
- Smith, E.M., North, C.S. & Spitznagel, E.L. (1992). A systematic study of mental illness and treatment in 600 homeless men.Annals of Clinical Psychiatry 4: 111–120.
- Smith, E.M., North, C.S. & Spitznagel, E.L. (1993). Alcohol, drugs, and psychiatric comorbidity among homeless women: an epidemiologic study.Journal of Clinical Psychiatry, 54:82–87.
- Wright, J.D. & Weber, E. (1987).Homelessness and Health. New York McGraw-Hill.
- A comparison of homeless men and women: Different populations, different needs
Community Mental Health Journal
Volume 29, Issue 5 , pp 423-431
- Cover Date
- Print ISSN
- Online ISSN
- Kluwer Academic Publishers-Human Sciences Press
- Additional Links