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Ett folkhem för alla?: Kommunala insatser mot hemlöshet
Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Social Work.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-1203-9872
2008 (Swedish)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other scientific)
Abstract [en]

The overarching aim of this dissertation is to explore and describe Swedish local authorities’ measures to prevent and manage homelessness; how these measures diverge between different municipal categories; what factors predict homelessness, provisions of accommodation and cov-erage rates between the number of accommodations and the respective municipalities’ housing interventions.

Measures studied are policies and housing interventions. The housing interventions re-ferred to here are those provided by or through the social welfare authorities to persons living with unstable housing or who are homeless. The interventions can be divided into two main categories: 1) preventive interventions in the form of daily-life support, usually in the form of personnel support in the individual’s own apartment, designed to help persons at risk of becom-ing homeless to remain housed and prevent eviction; 2) accommodation support for persons who are already homeless and in need of housing. Such accommodations may be more or less temporary, more or less integrated and include a greater or lesser amount of care.

Two sets of data were collected for the study: 1) a case study of two category-housing programmes using both qualitative and quantitative data; 2) a survey of 147 randomly chosen municipalities (about half of the municipalities in Sweden) to explore the prevalence and charac-teristics of policies and housing interventions.

Findings from the case study show that special-category housing has positive direct effects on the housing stability of the residents and their feelings regarding their quality of life, but does not have a direct effect on their substance misuse. Moreover, the increased housing stability seems to be more a direct effect of the person having stayed on the programme, rather than a long-term effect. Furthermore, although their quality of life improves, the residents still experi-ence a lack of belonging and feel that their lives lack meaningful content.

On the national level, the findings show that an array of housing interventions divided into 12 sub-categories is offered to counteract homelessness. These categories vary along two central dimensions: care and normality. The two most frequent types of housing interventions in all types of municipalities are daily-life support and social contracts. Other housing interventions are marginal compared with these two. There is greater fluctuation between municipalities in the level of care provided than in the level of normality. Furthermore, the more densely populated municipalities are more highly engaged in developing housing policies and the administrative means to handle them. Such policies, however, seem to decrease the level of normality without promoting levels of care.

When exploring factors that predict homelessness, the findings show that urbanisation is central to understanding variations in homelessness, not only in the largest cities but also in less densely populated areas. In addition, higher rent levels and more of aggregated psychiatric prob-lems in the municipality seem to increase homelessness. The apartment rate and the proportion of public housing within the stock of apartments are both important for the possibility to pro-vide accommodations. Moreover, the proportion of single-parent households seems to enhance the need to provide such accommodations. Political majority and the functional organisation of the social services both seem to have an impact on the coverage rates. Thus, the findings indicate that the municipalities have various options for managing factors that impact on the homeless-ness rate.

Keywords: housing interventions, level of care, level of normality, policies, municipality, predicting homelessness

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2008.
Series
Mid Sweden University doctoral thesis, ISSN 1652-893X ; 49
National Category
Social Work
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:miun:diva-205ISBN: 978-91-85317-92-9 (print)OAI: oai:DiVA.org:miun-205DiVA, id: diva2:1957
Public defence
2008-05-23, F229, F, Campus, Östersund, 10:00 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2008-05-09 Created: 2008-05-09Bibliographically approved
List of papers
1. Socially excluding housing support to homeless substance misusers: Two Swedish case studies of special category housing
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Socially excluding housing support to homeless substance misusers: Two Swedish case studies of special category housing
2006 (English)In: International Journal of Social Welfare, ISSN 1369-6866, E-ISSN 1468-2397, Vol. 15, no 2, p. 162-171Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

This paper discusses special category housing for homeless addicts, based on case studies of two different housing programmes, using both qualitative and quantitative data. The staff and residents were interviewed about their experiences of the programmes. Longitudinal data was collected on various indicators of substance misuse and the frequency of contact with the social services at different levels. Our findings show that the special category housing has positive direct effects on the housing stability of the residents and their feelings regarding their quality of life, but not on their substance misuse. However, the increased housing stability seems to be more a direct effect of them staying on the programme, rather than a long-term effect. Furthermore, although their quality of life improves, the residents still experience a lack of belonging and that their lives lack a meaningful content. The choice of special category housing as an intervention model thus seems to perpetuate rather than prevent social exclusion and can possibly be described as an expression of institutionalised resignation

Keywords
housing support, social exclusion, substance misuse, homeless, special category housing, Sweden
National Category
Social Work
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:miun:diva-341 (URN)10.1111/j.1468-2397.2006.00385.x (DOI)000235985100007 ()2-s2.0-33644972890 (Scopus ID)3583 (Local ID)3583 (Archive number)3583 (OAI)
Available from: 2008-12-15 Created: 2008-12-04 Last updated: 2017-12-13Bibliographically approved
2. Boende och stöd: En nationell inventering av kommunernas boendeinsatser för utsatta grupper
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Boende och stöd: En nationell inventering av kommunernas boendeinsatser för utsatta grupper
2006 (English)In: Socialvetenskaplig tidskrift, ISSN 1104-1420, Vol. 13, no 4, p. 291-312Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [sv]

Artikeln redovisar en nationell inventering av boendeinsatser för människor som av olika orsaker saknar stabilitet i sitt boende. Med boendeinsatser avses både personella stödinsatser i hemmet och erbjudanden om olika fysiska boendemiljöer. Insatserna studeras utifrån olika karaktäristika och utifrån de övergripande dimensionerna normalitet och omsorg.

Abstract [en]

The article introduces a national inventory of housing intervention programmes for individuals who for various reasons do not have stable accommodation. Housing intervention implies both personal support in one’s own apartment and an offer of different forms of accommodation. The interventions are studied on the basis of different characteristics. The empirical material comes from a survey of 147 randomly chosen municipalities (about half of Sweden) reporting 386 housing interventions with a caseload of 11,187 individuals. They could be categorized in the following groups: night shelter, camping and hotel, low-threshold housing, treatment institution, half-way house, after-care housing, re-entry/training apartment, boarding home, category house (group housing for alcoholics), sub-leased normal apartment and two kinds of housing support (organized within a social-psychiatric context or not) . The different housing interventions were statistically analysed to distinguish similarities and differences, and two indexes level of normality and level of care were created. Based on these, all housing interventions were categorized in five groups: social sublet contract in normal housing, support and care in regular housing, residence and care institutions, low-threshold housing outside the continuum of care and re-entry housing at the end of the continuum of care. The findings should facilitate further studies on housing intervention policies and promote coordination of interventions to meet individual needs.

Keywords
Boendeinsatser, beskrivande egenskaper
National Category
Social Work
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:miun:diva-342 (URN)4410 (Local ID)4410 (Archive number)4410 (OAI)
Available from: 2008-12-04 Created: 2008-12-04 Last updated: 2011-06-07Bibliographically approved
3. Normality or care: An inventory of Swedish municipalities’ responses to unstable accommodation for vulnerable groups
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Normality or care: An inventory of Swedish municipalities’ responses to unstable accommodation for vulnerable groups
2008 (English)In: European Journal of Social Work, ISSN 1369-1457, E-ISSN 1468-2664, Vol. 11, no 4, p. 397-413Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

This article presents an inventory of policies and housing support interventions to the homeless and those at risk of becoming homeless in a representative sample of Swedish municipalities. Two types of intervention are included: various types of accommodation for those who are already homeless and daily life support for those at risk, either provided or financed by the social services in the municipality. Data were collected in 2004-2005 through a questionnaire e-mailed to local authority officials, in a stratified sample of about half of the Swedish municipalities (n=147). The results show that two types of housing intervention dominate the field: daily life support and sublet contracts, both of which have a relatively high normality factor, with a setting in normal housing. Daily life support includes care and is usually implemented before the tenant is evicted. The level of care related to various interventions fluctuates more between the municipalities than normality does. The more densely populated municipalities were more engaged in developing housing policies and administrative bodies to handle these. However, the implementation of housing policies does not seem related to improvements in the qualities of the interventions. On the contrary, the local authorities that have housing policies and administrative tools adapted to these policies provided a lower degree of both normality and care in the interventions. The results suggest that aspects of normality and care in the same type of housing interventions vary depending on the type of municipality, while the existence of policies has no influence on care and a negative effect on the degree of normality provided through the interventions.

Keywords
beondeinsatser; policy; osäker boendesituation; socialtjänst; omsorg och normalitet
National Category
Social Work
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:miun:diva-343 (URN)10.1080/13691450802075576 (DOI)207680000006 ()2-s2.0-57649238604 (Scopus ID)
Available from: 2008-12-12 Created: 2008-12-04 Last updated: 2017-12-13Bibliographically approved
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