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Homelessness in Wales Homelessness describes the condition of a person without a fixed place to live in. The Welsh Government views homelessness as one of the most extreme forms of social exclusions and is committed to prevent it and to support the homeless people, wherever possible…
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Download file to see previous pages Number of Homeless Households Figure 1 below shows the evolution of the number of homeless households from 2002 to 2010. While the number of homeless households increased from 2002 to 2004, it reduced continuously from 2004 to 2009, and in 2010 again, there was a slight increase in the number of homeless households. Figure 1 Number of Homeless Households in Wales The maximum number of homeless households was 9855 households in 2004. From 2004 to 2009, homelessness decreased at an average of nearly 11% per year and in 2010, the increase in homeless households was just over 12%. The average number of homeless households from 2002 to 2010 was 7182 households. Clearly, this shows that the efforts of the Welsh Government have been successful in their commitment for controlling homelessness and supporting homeless people. Reasons for Homelessness In order to succeed in their aim to reduce and eventually eradicate homelessness, the Welsh Government also studies the reasons why people/households become homeless. Figure 2 below shows the break-up of these reasons. Figure 2 Reasons for Homelessness in Wales in 2010 Figure 2 shows that the biggest reason, which accounts for 20% of homelessness in Wales in 2010, is the loss of tied accommodation which may be due to disasters like fire or for other social/financial reasons. If we combine this with the factor of loss of rented or tied institution or care centre which accounts for 16% of the homelessness, we see that just over 1/3rd, that is 36% of homelessness is caused by loss of rented/tied accommodation or institutions. The next biggest reason is the inability or unwillingness of parents to accommodate which accounts for 19% of homelessness. However, if we combine this statistic with homelessness due to inability or unwillingness of other relatives or friends which accounts for 8% of homelessness, we see that 27% of all homelessness is caused by social exclusion of homeless people by their parents/relatives/friends. Broadly speaking, the categories of reasons for homelessness may be divided into two parts: financial reasons and social reasons. Financial reasons include loss of rented/tied accommodation, mortgage arrears, and rent arrears. The financial reasons together are responsible for 42% of all homelessness. The social reasons include inability or unwillingness of parents/relatives/friends, break-up with partner and violence or harassment. The social reasons are responsible for 47% of all homelessness. In fact, a lot of social reasons also arise out of financial difficulties like the inability of parents to support. Economy and Homelessness As we have seen that 42% of homelessness is caused by purely financial reasons and some of the social reasons are also due to financial troubles, we now take a look at how homelessness varies with the economic output. For the economic output, we consider the data for Gross Value Added (GVA) for Wales. According to the statistics bureau of the Welsh Government, the GVA can be considered as a close substitute for Gross Domestic Product (GDP), the measure of economic output. Figure 3 below shows the relationship between actual GVA and the number of homeless households for different years. The data points shown in figure 3 are the values of GVA and number of homeless households in Wales from 2002 to 2009. The line has been drawn to show the approximate trend in the data points. Figure 3 GVA and homelessness in Wales for ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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