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“They Just Asked Me Why I Became Homeless”: “Failure to Ask” as a Barrier to Homeless Women's Ability to Access Services Post-Victimization

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As “access brokers” to resources for their clients, homeless shelter workers are often in a position to aid victimized homeless women in securing medical and psychological services postvictimization. Given high rates of victimization within this population, we would expect that a routine part of a shelter's case management process would involve queries regarding victimization. Through in-depth qualitative interviews with 42 victimized homeless women in Chicago and Detroit, we sought to discover the extent to which such queries were pursued by staff at their current shelter. What we found is that women are seldom asked to provide a complete history that includes experiences of violent victimization and its effects. From these results, we make several recommendations aimed at improving homeless victims' access to services.
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Keywords: CASE MANAGEMENT; HOMELESS; SHELTER; VICTIMIZATION; WOMEN

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 01 December 2014

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