Location

Portland State University

Start Date

4-5-2016 12:00 PM

End Date

4-5-2016 2:00 PM

Subjects

Homelessness -- Oregon -- Portland, Housing policy -- Oregon -- Portland, Homeless persons -- Oregon -- Portland

Description

From 2011 to 2014, there were 191 confirmed deaths among homeless persons living in Multnomah County, approximately 88% of which were among adult men (over the age of 18). This alarming statistic in no way-shape-or-form represents the demographic makeup of Multnomah County’s homeless population, with a 2015 point-in-time count finding males over the age of 24 comprising just 52% of Multnomah’s homeless. Among these individuals the average age of death was just 43.3 years old; for comparison, the standard life expectancy for a man born in Multnomah County is 76.6 years old. This pattern of vulnerability among homeless men may in fact be part of a larger trend, if so, it is one largely unrecognized by standard scales of vulnerability. The lack of common cause among threats to homeless male adults stresses a need for safe, managed environments where conditions related to physical health, mental health, and chronic homelessness can be addressed. Fortunately, such places exist.

Transitional housing, part of the “housing first” model, originated with a series of landmark studies in the 1990s by Randall Kuhn and Dennis P. Culhane. Since then over 300 American cities, including the city of Portland, have adopted housing first plans to end transitional and chronic homelessness. It would seem the successes of transitional housing organizations within Portland would preclude the fatality numbers referenced above. The question therefore is raised: What barriers exist that are preventing homeless male adults in Portland from accessing transitional housing programs and how can these issues be addressed?

Description

The paper that accompanies the poster is included in the Additional Files below.

Persistent Identifier

http://archives.pdx.edu/ds/psu/17248

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COinS
 
May 4th, 12:00 PM May 4th, 2:00 PM

Barriers to Transitional Housing Access among Homeless Male Adults in the City of Portland

Portland State University

From 2011 to 2014, there were 191 confirmed deaths among homeless persons living in Multnomah County, approximately 88% of which were among adult men (over the age of 18). This alarming statistic in no way-shape-or-form represents the demographic makeup of Multnomah County’s homeless population, with a 2015 point-in-time count finding males over the age of 24 comprising just 52% of Multnomah’s homeless. Among these individuals the average age of death was just 43.3 years old; for comparison, the standard life expectancy for a man born in Multnomah County is 76.6 years old. This pattern of vulnerability among homeless men may in fact be part of a larger trend, if so, it is one largely unrecognized by standard scales of vulnerability. The lack of common cause among threats to homeless male adults stresses a need for safe, managed environments where conditions related to physical health, mental health, and chronic homelessness can be addressed. Fortunately, such places exist.

Transitional housing, part of the “housing first” model, originated with a series of landmark studies in the 1990s by Randall Kuhn and Dennis P. Culhane. Since then over 300 American cities, including the city of Portland, have adopted housing first plans to end transitional and chronic homelessness. It would seem the successes of transitional housing organizations within Portland would preclude the fatality numbers referenced above. The question therefore is raised: What barriers exist that are preventing homeless male adults in Portland from accessing transitional housing programs and how can these issues be addressed?