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Homelessness among the Elderly: A Preliminary Exploratory Study of Causation

Society for the Study of Social Problems

Author: Keigher, S. M.
Type: Journal Article
Year: 1988

Abstract:

The identity of the homeless elderly in Chicago, Ill, & their shelter & nonshelter needs are explored using case-specific data on clients (N = 125, aged 60+) for whom emergency services had been provided by the Chicago Depts of Human Services & Aging & Disability; data were also collected via interviews conducted with 45 key informants & participant observation. Findings indicate that: this population was generally older & more likely to be minority than the city's aged population; 33% of the sample had been picked up because they were wandering the streets or lost; & 31% had used an agency shelter at least once, & 50% of these were considered "chronically undomiciled." Compared with those who had never used a shelter, the shelter users had experienced more health & emotional problems & victimization by violence. The shelter nonusers had frequently been assisted with equally serious personal, medical, & psychiatric problems; however, in addition, they had significant problems with the condition of their housing. The immensity of housing problems for the elderly is underscored.

Further Details

Accession Number: 13.5.03
Keywords: North America, older, emotional
Reads: 158
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