Download Better Times Than This: Youth Homelessness in Britain by Tom Hall PDF

By Tom Hall

If the supposedly disaffected younger give you the sub-text to such a lot of of our social anxieties, then the younger homeless loom higher the following than so much: our such a lot shiny reminder of social exclusion, and exemplars too of what the tabloid press prefer to describe because the feckless, wilful bad. This ebook explores what lifestyles is actually like for Britain’s younger homeless: estranged from their households, out of labor and making do at the fringes of social defense. the result's a vibrant portrait of a urgent social challenge. in keeping with prolonged fieldwork research – the writer spent one year within the corporation of teens relocating among hostel lodging, rented bed-sit tenancies and episodes of rooflessness – higher occasions Than this is often Britain’s first complete ethnographic examine of stripling homelessness.

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The hostel cannot operate without the housing benefit income it receives from the local council for each young person staying there; in addition to which, ensuring that residents are in receipt of, and responsible for, a regular income is a part of the wider agenda to which the staff team are working (as Ann indicates on page 23). A little over two weeks into her stay at the hostel, Katy’s battered file is a little thicker; her housing benefit application has 10. The Benefits Agency is, or was, an executive agency of the Department of Social Security; the two are not identical.

Richie, Terry, Tony and Siobhan have all moved on to rented bedsit rooms of their own, and Chris has moved back to stay with his mother. These five are quickly replaced by new arrivals. The first of these is Danny. He is dropped off outside the hostel by his father, who drives off as soon as Danny has lugged his bag from the back seat of the car. Danny has left home under a cloud after one too many calls to his parents from the local police station; he is 16 years old. His family know about the hostel because Danny’s sister Clare stayed there a year ago.

Glad to be gone from home, and even a little thrilled at the precariousness of his situation, he is confident he will land on his feet as and when he decides to ‘get things sorted’, and is not to be persuaded to start setting money aside for a deposit on a rented room just now. Ann and Poppy have worked with dozens of young people like Marky and Jack and they expect to have to chip away at them. All the same, it is something of a puzzle and frustration that some residents don’t seem to want to help themselves.

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