Homelessness and mental illness
HOMELESSNESS AND MENTAL ILLNESS: THE RELATIONSHIP
Date of submission
Homelessness and Mental Illness
A housing policy can be thought of as the efforts put in by a given government to transform a housing market(s) for the purposes of achieving social objectives. In most cases, a housing policy is meant to ensure that the general population has access to a home that is affordable. For instance, the British Conservative/Liberal Democratic coalition’s housing policy is aimed at increasing the number of affordable housing units; fostering homeownership; making social housing flexible; tackling homelessness (especially for the
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With time however, the funding of these specialist hostels was stopped although some of the other services are still being funded by the government (Homeless Link 2009). Before the 1990 intervention though, the Mental Health Act of 1983 was fully in force. This Act is still being applied. Section 117 of this Act instructs that homeless mentally ill persons (especially those who have been hospitalized) have to be given accommodation (care home or hostel or supported housing) as part of their aftercare plan. In addition, this Act dictates that their housing needs (care and attention) has to be arranged for in these homes. In recent times (2008), the Care Programme Approach has been modified to pay special focus to homeless persons suffering from secondary mental illnesses since they are very much a vulnerable group. This new approach stipulates that the homeless secondary mentally ill persons are to be given not only free housing but also free mental health care services as well as community social services under care coordinators (Homeless Link 2009).
In 2008, the UK Department of Health (DH) and Department for Communities and Local Government (CLG) published a guide for homeless mentally ill persons entitled ‘Getting through- Access to mental health services’ that was meant to explain to them how they can deal with their predicament. That same year, a guide for mental health providers was also published by the DH Housing Lin. This was an