How "Deserving" Are the Most Vulnerable Homeless?
These thoughts on poverty relate to the strengths and needs of shelter programs that lead people who are homeless to self-sufficiency. Demographic data from 4,000 homeless shelter guests over a 4-year period gave evidence that the shelter was an important part of a suburban social service delivery system. It met the short-term needs of many who were homeless. The irony is that the same program developed to help homeless individuals attain self-sufficiency appears to set up many of the most vulnerable to fail, specifically mothers and their children and those addicted to alcohol and drugs.