Homelessness Definition Essay

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Although homelessness is associated with images of people sleeping on streets, but this notion is inaccurate because it was initially uncommon and excludes several other populations. Homelessness has always existed within the United States, but it was not until the 1980’s where it started to become recognized as an issue (Perl et al., 2015a). Homelessness, several years’ prior the 1970s, was not visible, and the demographics were normally single men living in hotels with single-room occupancy (Perl et al., 2015a). Once the homeless population started to increase, homelessness started to become visible and its demographics also started to change. Many may agree on what is defined as homelessness, but a federal definition does not exist. In order…show more content…
The initial definition of the McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act defined homelessness as: an individual who lacked a fixed nighttime residence, and lives in a place made for temporary living accommodations, intended to be institutionalized, or not regularly used for sleeping by human beings (Perl et al., 2015a). The initial definition of homelessness presented by the Act failed to include individual’s dependent on federal programs for shelter (Perl et al., 2015a). In response to the lack of intersectionality of the McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act, the HEARTH Act or the Homeless Emergency Assistance and Rapid Transition Act was enacted and expanded the definition of “homeless individuals”. The HEARTH Act included: living in hotels or motels paid for by a government entity or charitable organization, living in transitional housing, and living in other specified locations which would qualify someone as “homeless”. A few locations the HEARTH Act included were: cars, parks, abandoned buildings, bus or train stations, airports, and campgrounds. The McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act defines currently homelessness
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