Homelessness is a social issue in the United States of America, one that has been with us for decades, if not for our entire history. Of particular concern within the scope of this paper is the subject of homelessness among military veterans. This paper will examine the issue as a social problem, and look at contributing factors and current solutions.
In order to address the problem, it is necessary to understand certain terms. The definition of the term ‘veteran’ is given in 17 USC Sec. 101 of the U.S. Code: “The term ‘veteran’ means a person who served in the active military, naval or air service, and who was discharged or released therefrom under conditions other than dishonorable.” In her report for the Veterans Administration (VA) entitled “Veterans and Homelessness”, Libby Perl defines a homeless veteran as someone without adequate nighttime residence, or someone who will be without housing within 14 days (3).
1. Is There a Problem with Homelessness Among U.S. Veterans?
America has been at war for thirteen years. According to ABC News, between September 11, 2001 and September 11, 2011 “…2,333,972 American military personnel had been deployed to Iraq, Afghanistan or both, as of Aug. 30, 2011. Of that total, 1,353, 627 have since left the military….” (Martinez). The article states that the 2010 national census counted the U.S. population to be 308,745,538, drawing the conclusion that only 0.75% of the country’s population serves active duty. It also states that there were 22,658,000 living veterans, which makes up approximately 7% of the U.S. population. The importance of these ratios will become more evident.
In 2009, the United States government acknowledged there is a problem with the rate of homelessness among veterans...
... middle of paper ...
...s Internet Ventures. 11 Nov. 2011. Web. 28 Feb. 2014. .
Perl, Libby. Veterans and Homelessness. November 29, 2013. RL34024. Web. March 4, 2014.
Solari, C., Cortes, A., and Brown, S. United States. The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. Office of Community Planning and Development. The 2012 Annual Homeless Assessment Report (AHAR) to Congress, Volume II Estimates of Homelessness in the United States. Washington. GPO: 2012. Web. March 1, 2014.
Women Veteran Profile (cited as such). United States. The Department of Veterans Affairs. Women Veteran Profile. Washington. VA: 2013. Web. March 4, 2014.