, Volume 28, Issue 3-4, pp 191-197,
Open Access This content is freely available online to anyone, anywhere at any time.
Date: 26 Jun 2007

Guest Editorial: The Promise of Homelessness Prevention

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Homelessness is a tragic social problem affecting more than 2.1 million adults and 1.3 million children each year (Burt et al. 2001). Almost 10% of people living in poverty experience homelessness annually (Burt et al. 2001) and more than 25% of all people with severe mental illness will experience the devastation of losing their homes at some point in their lives (Herman et al. 1998; Susser et al. 1991).

Homelessness is far too common in our society. People who are homeless are among the most vulnerable, disenfranchised, and marginalized groups in our nation. They are disconnected from community life, reassuring routines, family and other sustaining relationships, as well as from mainstream services. Often invisible, these individuals lack a voice and are treated as inconsequential. In addition to their exclusion from community life, they are beset by the many ills associated with extreme poverty and residential instability. Life on the streets is filled with danger, extreme isolation, ...