Youth Homelessness : the Street and Work - From Exclusion to Integration

Youth Homelessness : the Street and Work - From Exclusion to Integration

In this text, the authors argue that youth homelessness can be accounted for by a complext framework of explanations that links structural and individual determining factors. The authors propose two interpretations of youth homelessness in the North American context. The first considers the phenomenon as a specific form of homelessness resulting from social transformations in post-industrial societies. The second presents youth homelessness as a particular mode of the youth experience and a response to the ongoing social transformations. Moreover, they will assert that the work environment and youth homelessness cannot be seen as mutually exclusive, closed spheres. Rather, the life of homeless youth involves the implementation of diverse practices and types of expertise which are generally underestimated or qualified as exclusion strategies. We will illustrate three forms of relationship between work and youth homelessness: the street as a space of exclusion and non-work, integration into a world of marginal and parallel work, and the transfer of abilities acquired on the street to regular work activities.

PAGES: 395-407
PUBLICATION DATE: 2003
LOCATION: North America