Taking action together to address homelessness

Mar 28 2019

Taking action together to address homelessness

On any given night, more than 35,000 individuals are experiencing homelessness in Canada. Each year, it is more than 235,000 individuals who will experience homelessness in the country.(1) Historically, homeless people in Canada were older, single males. That being said, the current crisis seems to reveal a much more diverse picture. Indeed, there are more women, families and youth today who are homeless than in the past. The number of people aged 50 and over who are homeless, however, continues to increase. They represent 24.4% of users in homeless shelters.(1)

These statistics resonate with other reports indicating that older adults are at increasing risk of homelessness due to a lack of support, precarious health, economic and housing situations, and a lack of age-appropriate programs and services.(2; 3; 4) The risk of homelessness can also be aggravated by many factors, including the death of a spouse, the lack of social housing, social isolation, or a past filled with abuse and violence. But what can be done to reduce homelessness?

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Courtesy McMaster Optimal Aging Portal