Journal of Social Distress and the Homeless

, Volume 7, Issue 4, pp 227-240

First online:

Domestic Violence, Criminal Justice Responses and Homelessness: Finding the Connection and Addressing the Problem

  • Jana L. BufkinAffiliated withCriminal Justice Department, Monroe, Louisiana. Jana L. Bufkin, Northeast Louisiana University, College of Liberal Arts, Northeast Louisiana University
  • , Judith BrayAffiliated withResidential Services Director, YWCA

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As more social scientists examine the female side of social issues a host of questions are answered and further inquiries form in the wings. Two fields where much detailed and valuable information on women have been provided, and many questions still remain, are social work and criminal justice. A meeting point for these disciplines lies in the area of homelessness and females. By most accounts, a sizable proportion of homeless women, many of whom are mothers, become homeless due to domestic abuse. Knowledge of ineffective criminal justice responses to domestic violence leaves one to ponder whether there exists a connection between lack of social control in domestic abuse calls and the onset of female homelessness. The present work addresses this knowledge gap and suggests future research necessary to delineate a proposed link between weak criminal justice responses and female homelessness. Policy initiatives to correct these flaws are provided as well.

domestic violence criminal justice homelessness