Cross Client Issues – Research

Homeless and Connected: Mobile phones and mobile internet in the lives of families and young people experiencing homelessness

The University of Sydney; 2014

Research on mobile phone and mobile internet access, ownership and use amongst 95 families and young people experiencing homelessness was conducted to gather evidence on the specific needs and circumstances of this group. Key questions were whether and how mobiles and other Internet-enabled devices are used to connect with support, government and other online services, and what are the social and economic benefits and risks that mobile technologies represent.

The study found that 95 per cent of participants had a mobile phone, which is higher than that recorded for the general population, and that mobile phones were considered essential for survival and safety, for gaining new skills and for moving out of homelessness.

The project team worked closely with the national peak agency, Homelessness Australia, and several state agencies and service providers.

 Working in the Trenches: Compassion Fatigue and Job Satisfaction among Workers Who Serve Homeless Clients

Alena M Howell, St Catherines Unversity, May 2012

The purpose of this study was to explore the relationship between workers’ experiences of compassion fatigue and workers’ experiences of job satisfaction as they engage with homeless clientele with various presenting concerns.

Findings were based on surveys of employees from a targeted agency in America that serves homeless clientele.  Data was collected and analysed using various statistical and calculative methods.

These findings indicated that a correlative relationship exists between workers’ experiences of compassion fatigue and experiences of job satisfaction, although the correlation appears to be weak.  The findings point to the need for continued efforts to identify and treat compassion fatigue among workers, and the continued need to investigate the role of compassion satisfaction opportunities as they influence experiences of job satisfaction.

Precarious housing and health

A VicHealth funded project, originally entitled Mitigating negative health outcomes of precarious housing, explores the relationship between precarious housing and health. Led by Hanover Welfare Services and the University of Melbourne, the project was conducted in partnership with the University of Adelaide, Melbourne Citymission and the AHURI Research Synthesis Unit in 2009–10.

The housing careers of people with a disability

This 2009 Australian Housing and Urban Research Institute (AHURI) research paper considers the housing careers of persons affected by disability and those family members with significant care responsibilities.

Stakeholder views of the regulation of affordable housing providers in Australia

This 2011 AHURI Final Report contributes to discussions in government and among not-for-profit housing providers about the way regulation can assist their efforts to increase the supply of affordable rental housing in Australia.

Measuring the Impact of SAAP-funded Homelessness Services on Client Self-reliance

This 2008 study conducted by the Social Research Policy Centre, UNSW, involved a client survey to measure whether and to what extent receiving SAAP services facilitates positive changes in client self-reliance, and to examine what forms this improvement takes for different groups of clients.

Loneliness, housing and health in Australia

This is AHURI Final Report No. 164 which explores loneliness and its connection to housing policy in Australia and how it impacts on health.

What future for Australian public housing? A critical analysis

This is AHURI Research and Policy BulletinNo 135, February 2011. There is resistance to reinvesting in public housing because of its poor reputation and the significant costs of providing support to its disadvantaged residents. Yet increased affordable housing—either provided in the public or community sector—will be required to meet the needs of australian households.

The problems of Social Housing: findings from a panel investigation

This is the April 2011 AHURI Final Report No. 166 presenting the findings from a panel investigation established to consider the impact of stigma for social housing residents and the policies that can be deployed to mitigate its effects.

The dynamics of housing affordability: movements in and out of housing affordability stress 2001–2006

This is the 2009 Final Report (Number 133) of an AHURI project investigates the dynamics of housing affordability in Australia over the period 2001–06 by tracking the housing affordability trajectories of a nationally representative sample of Australians across a period of six years, using the Household, Income and Labour Dynamics in Australia (HILDA) Survey. This project provides important information for the formulation and design of policies that aim to improve housing affordability in Australia.

Problem gambling among those seeking homelessness services

In 2007-08, there were 2,462 Supported Accommodation Assistance Program (SAAP) support periods where the client was identified as having gambling-related issues. This report from the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare  provides demographic information about SAAP clients with gambling-related issues, commentary on SAAP data and contextual information to better understand the link between homelessness and problem gambling. The report also outlines the limitations on conclusions that can be drawn from the SAAP data in relation to problem gambling and homelessness.

Bridging the divide: the experiences of low-income households excluded from the private rental sector in Australia

This April 2011 AHURI Positioning Paper sets out the research and conceptual parameters for a study examining re-entry into permanent housing following various conditions of forced exit from the private rental market. It identifies the theoretical and policy significance for empirical fieldwork that will take place across a number of sites in Queensland.

At home and in place? The role of housing in social inclusion

Australian Housing and Urban Research Institute (AHURI) – Final Report – No.177 – October 2011

This report, authored by Kath Hulse, Keith Jacobs, Kathy Arthurson and Angela Spinney, is the Final Report from a project that aims to enhance understanding of aspects of home, housing and place which interact with social and economic disadvantage and the ways in which housing-related policies and programs can promote social inclusion.

The Home Study: Comparing the priorities of multiply excluded homeless people and support agencies

Graham Bowpitt, Nottingham Trent University; Peter Dwyer, University of Salford; Eva Sundin, Nottingham Trent University and Mark Weinstein, Nottingham Trent University. November 2011

This report details findings from one of four studies commissioned in 2009 under the Economic and Social Research Council’s (ESRC) ‘Multiple Exclusion Homelessness’ programme. The particular focus of the HOME Study (HOmelessness and Multiple Exclusion) was to consider the priorities, agendas and aspirations of homeless people alongside those of the varied statutory and voluntary sector agencies which routinely come into contact with them. The overall objective was to contribute to understandings about the causes of, and solutions to, multiple exclusion homelessness (MEH) by comparing the priorities and aspirations of multiply excluded homeless people (MEHP) with those of support agencies.

Homelessness is increasingly recognised as one facet of a wider experience of social exclusion. The term ‘multiple exclusion homelessness’ (MEH) has emerged as a shorthand term to describe homeless people who suffer deep social exclusion often due to a combination of on-going issues in their lives and non-engagement with, or exclusion from, effective contact with support services. Single, multiply excluded homeless adults are the particular focus of this study. People experiencing multiple exclusion homelessness characteristically combine a current, or recent (i.e. within the last 12 months), experience of homelessness (broadly defined to include rough sleeping, living in emergency or insecure accommodation), with one or more indicators of deep social exclusion, for example, chronic ill health (mental or physical), problematic substance use (drugs or alcohol), long-term unemployment, or an institutional background (prison, armed forces or time spent in local authority care in childhood). They routinely live in poverty and regularly lack supportive close or familial relationships. Multiply excluded homeless people (MEHP) have become the focus of policies that attempt to tackle the causes of their social exclusion.

Multiple Exclusion Homelessness

This project was funded by the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC), the UK’s largest organisation for funding research on economic and social issues, and “aims to provide a statistically robust account of the nature and patterns of multiple exclusion homelessness (MEH) across the UK.  MEH was defined as follows:

“People have experienced MEH if they have been homeless (including experience of temporary/unsuitable accommodation as well as sleeping rough) and have also experienced one or more of the following other domains of ‘deep social exclusion’: institutional care (prison mental health hospitals); substance abuse (drug, alcohol, solvent or gas misuse); or participation in street culture activities (begging, street drinking, sex work).”