FEANTSA and Fondation Abbé Pierre’s Third Overview of Housing Exclusion in Europe
Since 2015, the European Federation of National Organisations Working with the Homeless (FEANTSA) and the Fondation Abbé Pierre have collaborated to produce an annual report that examines the latest Eurostat data and other aspects of housing in Europe. The 2018 Overview of Housing Exclusion in Europe discusses the state of homelessness, particularly among children, women and migrants, including profiles on homelessness in certain European countries. According to the report, housing exclusion is still a fast-growing problem that leads to saturation of support systems, as well as increased pressure on emergency services. The organizations propose that the European Union strengthen their decision-making role in regards to coordination, follow-up and support of Member States in bringing about the right to housing for all to combat such growing issues.
Read the report here.
Why Does Housing First Work?
Professor Sarah Johnsen opens her discussion about the efficiency of Housing first by asking: “what is it about Housing First that fosters such positive housing (and other) outcomes for a group who has traditionally been poorly served by mainstream provision”?
First, she looks at research on the prevalence and nature of adverse childhood experience (ACE) among individuals experiencing homelessness, and how they tend to respond to support services. She suggests that many times, service providers assume that everyone can make use of support in a straightforward, anxiety-free, way; however, people can be quite phobic of it. Housing first is one of a number of approaches that function as a more personalized, psychologically-informed, method of addressing homelessness. Johnsen points to four key components that underpin the success of housing first: 1) the longevity of secure housing and support; 2) flexibility of support; 3) ‘stickability’, which allows for trust and receptivity; and 4) normality of the type of housing participants are matched with.
Read the blog here.
Breaking Barriers: Homelessness and Employment in Calagary, Canada
Nick Falvo of the Calgary Homeless Foundation draws several conclusions about the links between homelessness and employment in Calgary, a city in Alberta, Canada. Inadequate income assistance programs, major health challenges and a lack of subsidized child care all pose as barriers to employment for people experiencing homelessness. According to Stephen W. Hwang’s Homelessness and Health article, referenced in the blog, people without housing develop disabilities more commonly seen among people decades older than them, which can negatively affect their capacity to work. He also mentions employment-readiness programs throughout the city that can help combat the issues mentioned. These programs offer a range of services – interview skills, employment strategies, resume writing, financial literacy, and more.
Read the blog here.
Mayor of Atlanta, Georgia, Keisha Lance Bottoms, has announced her participation in the Mayors and CEOs for U.S. Housing Investment – a first-of-its-kind alliance between local government and business leaders. The initiative currently consists of 16 mayors and CEOs from across the United States, advocating for federal investment in affordable housing and homelessness services. Since 2015, the city has seen a 34% decline in street homelessness and a 44% decline in chronic homelessness.
“With the assistance of our business community, local leaders can speak with a louder voice and discover innovative ways to improve the quality of life for the people we serve,” said Mayor Bottoms.
Read the article here.