Beside the Golden Door: Policy, Politics, and the Homeless

Beside the Golden Door: Policy, Politics, and the Homeless

by Joel A. Devine, Beth Rubin, James Wright
     
 

ISBN-10: 0202306135

ISBN-13: 9780202306131

Pub. Date: 12/31/1998

Publisher: Transaction Publishers

James Wright's Address Unknown: The Homeless in America focused on the problem of homelessness during the mid-to-late 1980s, making an important contribution to the then-emerging public debate of a rapidly growing and increasingly visible social problem. Beside the Golden Door updates the story and our knowledge of homelessness through the

Overview

James Wright's Address Unknown: The Homeless in America focused on the problem of homelessness during the mid-to-late 1980s, making an important contribution to the then-emerging public debate of a rapidly growing and increasingly visible social problem. Beside the Golden Door updates the story and our knowledge of homelessness through the middle 1990s, advancing the thesis that an emphasis on factors such as mental illness or substance abuse is descriptively accurate but fails as a causal account of the rise of homelessness as a social problem. The authors reject efforts to cast the issue in "either-or" terms, as social structure versus individual deficiencies, arguing that poverty and housing trends have created a situation where some people are destined to be homeless, but personal factors such as mental illness or substance abuse are critical in predicting who those people turn out to be. Beside the Golden Door details numerous dimensions of the homelessness issue: the rise in poverty; the decline of low-income housing; conceptual, measurement, and practical problems of counting the homeless and the Census Bureau's ill-fated 1990 effort to do so; the role of familial estrangement, mental illness, and substance abuse; and health status and behaviors. It concludes with discussions and comparisons of rural versus urban homelessness, street children in North and Latin America, and homelessness in post-industrial societies. The material in Beside the Golden Door will be accessible to undergraduate students and interested lay readers as well as specialists. "Both the content and style of this book make an excellent instructive read for students, practitioners, and scholars, alike."--Social Forces James D. Wright is Charles and Leo Favrot Professor of Human Relations, Department of Sociology, Tulane University and author of over thirteen books including Address Unknown and Crime and Violence in America. Beth A. Rubin is associate professor, Department of Sociology, Tulane University. She is the author of Shifts in the Social Contract: Understanding Change in American Society. Joel A. Devine is professor, Department of Sociology, Tulane University, and coauthor of The Greatest of Evils: Urban Poverty and the American Underclass.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780202306131
Publisher:
Transaction Publishers
Publication date:
12/31/1998
Series:
Social Institutions and Social Change Series
Pages:
238
Product dimensions:
6.30(w) x 9.20(h) x 0.90(d)
Lexile:
1420L (what's this?)

Table of Contents

Preface xiii(4)
Acknowledgments xvii
1 The Homeless: What Are the Issues? What Are the Controversies?
1(30)
Theories about Homelessness
7(7)
Who Are the Homeless? Social and Demographic Characteristics
14(5)
How Many Homeless?
19(2)
Is Homelessness a New Problem?
21(2)
Is Homelessness a Growing Problem?
23(1)
Is Homelessness a Mental Health or Substance Abuse Problem?
24(2)
Do People "Choose to Be Homeless?
26(2)
The Political Economy of Homelessness: Poverty and Housing
28(3)
2 Counting the Homeless
31(22)
Counting the Homeless in Chicago: A Cautionary Tale
32(5)
How Many Homeless?
37(1)
The 1990 Census
38(2)
The S-Night Experiments
40(1)
S-Night Results: An Overview
41(2)
S-Night in New Orleans
43(1)
The Shelter Count in New Orleans
44(3)
The Street Count in New Orleans
47(6)
3 Why the Homeless Can't Be Counted
53(12)
The Uncounted Homeless
54(1)
Housing Dynamics and the "Uncountable" Homeless
55(7)
Conclusions
62(3)
4 Poverty, Housing, and Homelessness
65(28)
The Urban Poverty Situation
67(12)
Low-Income Housing
79(1)
Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Programs
79(2)
Federal Housing Policy
81(1)
If Not Housing, What?
82(3)
Skid Row
85(1)
Poverty and Low-Income Housing: The Legacy of the 1980's
86(5)
Final Thoughts on Poverty and Housing
91(2)
5 Families and Family Estrangement
93(12)
Homeless Families
93(5)
Family Backgrounds and Familial Estrangement
98(7)
6 Mental Illness and Substance Abuse
105(22)
Mental Illness
105(5)
Substance Abuse
110(2)
The New Orleans Homeless Substance Abusers Program (NOHSAP)
112(1)
Characteristics of NOHSAP Clients
112(1)
Education
113(2)
Employment
115(1)
Income
116(7)
Substance Abuse and Housing Outcomes
123(1)
Conclusions
124(3)
7 Why Alcohol and Drug Treatment Is Not the Solution
127(20)
Program Design
128(1)
Treatment Issues
129(1)
Evaluation Design
130(2)
Randomization
132(2)
Attrition
134(3)
Process Evaluation
137(3)
Outcome Evaluation
140(2)
Conclusion
142(5)
8 Health and Health Status
147(30)
Introduction
147(2)
Prior Research
149(1)
Research Design and Precedures
150(2)
Poor Health as a Cause of Homelessness
152(2)
Homelessness as a Cause of Poor Health
154(14)
Homelessness as a Complicating Factor in the Delivery of Health Care
168(3)
Health, Health Policy, and the Homeless
171(3)
Conclusions
174(3)
9 Outside American Cities: Rural and European Homelessness
177(18)
Rural Poverty
178(4)
Rural Homelesness
182(2)
Homelessness in Europe
184(1)
On Definitions and Numbers
185(2)
Characteristics of the European Homeless
187(2)
Causes of Homelesness
189(1)
Social Policy
190(3)
Conclusions
193(2)
10 Street Children in North and Latin America
195(14)
The Honduran Context
196(2)
Proyecto Alternativos
198(2)
Children in and of the Streets of Tegucigalpa
200(5)
Poverty, Homelessness, and Child Health in the United States
205(2)
Conclusion
207(2)
11 Homelessness in the Twenty-First Century
209(8)
References 217(16)
Index 233

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