Psychological distress and homeless duration

Scutella, R and Johnson, G 2018, 'Psychological distress and homeless duration', Housing Studies, vol. 33, no. 3, pp. 433-454.


Document type: Journal Article
Collection: Journal Articles

Title Psychological distress and homeless duration
Author(s) Scutella, R
Johnson, G
Year 2018
Journal name Housing Studies
Volume number 33
Issue number 3
Start page 433
End page 454
Total pages 22
Publisher Routledge
Abstract We examine whether psychological distress levels vary with homeless and housed duration. We do this using longitudinal data from a national survey of persons facing housing insecurity that, unlike prior studies, is not restricted to those who are currently homeless (or to particular subsets of the homeless), but instead follows a nationally representative sample of Australians experiencing housing insecurity. This allows us to use methods that isolate the effects of changes in time spent homeless and time spent housed on psychological distress holding constant all unobserved person-specific effects that are time invariant. We find that the relationship between psychological distress and homelessness varies by gender and by type of homelessness. Males recently experiencing literal homelessness (i.e. sleeping rough or in crisis accommodation) exhibit the highest levels of distress, but consistent with the adaptation hypothesis, distress levels decline as homeless duration increases. This pattern is not seen when examining a broader notion of homelessness for males. Likewise, there is no clear pattern with regard to homeless duration for females.
Subject Social Policy
Keyword(s) Adaptation
homeless dynamics
psychological distress
DOI - identifier 10.1080/02673037.2017.1346787
Copyright notice © 2017 Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor and Francis Group
ISSN 0267-3037
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