Research Paper: Cause of Homelessness in America

Pages: 7 (2223 words)  ·  Bibliography Sources: 6  ·  Level: College Junior  ·  Topic: Family and Marriage  ·  Buy This Paper


[. . .] There are certain TV shows on teen channels that focus and promote teen pregnancy. In many families teen pregnancy is not accepted. The pregnant teen is sent away from home, or runs away. It is obvious that they cannot support themselves and the baby. They either go to help centers, or become homeless.

Sexual orientation is another cause of teen homelessness. In cases where teens have other Sexual orientation than the heterosexual one, the difficulty of accepting this by family members determines teens to run away or to be sent away from home. This is why many of them become homeless, and become the victims of expanded prostitution networks.

Another cause of homeless is represented by mental illness. This is the case of adults, but also of teens (Fertig & Reingold, 2010). The individuals that suffer from such illnesses become homeless because they lack financial support, family support, and state's authorities' support. These people need special care. This refers to financial, but also to health care. Their mental situation makes it easy for others to abuse them in several ways.

There are numerous studies made by specialists that investigate what the causes of homelessness are. But there are also studies where homeless people are administered questionnaires intended to identify these causes from the source. A study on homelessness developed in Hillsborough County has directly questioned homeless people on the causes that they think determine their situation.

Half of the respondents have identified employment and financial reasons as the cause of homelessness. An important percentage of respondents have identified family, medical problems, as an important cause (HC of Hillsborough County, 2011). Other causes of homeless reported by the respondents are represented by housing issues, drug and alcohol abuse, forced relocation, jail time, immigration, and others. Most of these individuals suffer from several of these causes.

Therefore, affordable housing seems to be the most important factor that determines homelessness in the U.S. But it is important to identify what influences affordable housing. The housing can be unaffordable in correlation with the salaries level. This means that for a certain percentage of the population, the salary is too small to afford housing. In situations where housing costs reach 30% of the household income, it is likely that the household in case is in danger of becoming homeless. The economic conditions have worsened, forcing companies to restructure their human resources, or to reduce the salary level. This is a strategic measure intended to help these companies survive, while generating incomes to the state budget. But this measure reduces the employees' incomes level. This significantly affects their housing situation. If they can no longer afford housing, they cannot support their jobs either. They enter a vicious cycle that makes it difficult to exit, because one factor affects the others.

However, it is important to evaluate the homelessness level as a whole. This means that one must understand that although economic factors seem to be the primary cause of homelessness, this phenomenon is determined by a combination of factors. It is also important to understand that by improving some of these factors, even those that determine a smaller percentage of the homeless, the situation can significantly improve. By improving the support that should be provided to teens that become homeless because of different social issues, like social support after getting out of foster care, social support for pregnant teens, health care support for individuals suffering from different illnesses, a large number of homeless situations can be reduced. It is important to understand what the state's authorities can do in order to improve this phenomenon.

Reference list:

1. Top Causes of Homelessness in America (2012). HomeAid. Retrieved April 1, 2013 from

2. Causes of Homelessness (2011). Homeless Coalition of Hillsborough County. Retrieved April 3, 2013 from

3. Crane, M. et al. (2005). The Causes of Homeless in Later Life: Findings from a Three Nations Study. Journal of Gerontology. Retrieved April 3.

4. Fischer, P. (1992). Victimization and Homelessness: Cause and Effect. New England Journal of Public Policy. Retrieved April 3, 2013.

5. Aratani, Y. (2009). Homeless Children and Youth: Causes and Consequences. National Center for Children in Poverty. Retrieved April 3, 2013.

6. Fertig, A. & Reingold, D. (2010). The Characteristics and Causes of Homeless among At Risk Families… [END OF PREVIEW]

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Cite This Research Paper:

APA Format

Cause of Homelessness in America.  (2013, April 4).  Retrieved May 25, 2019, from

MLA Format

"Cause of Homelessness in America."  4 April 2013.  Web.  25 May 2019. <>.

Chicago Format

"Cause of Homelessness in America."  April 4, 2013.  Accessed May 25, 2019.