Homelessness a cause, not a result of drug abuse

This article has gotten a lot of attention today. It runs counter to my admittedly biased experience and the experience of colleague who work in settings focused on homelessness. Note that it uses the term substance abuse rather than dependence. It’s easy to believe that people with a diagnosis of substance abuse may have developed problems after becoming homeless. I find it more difficult to believe that people with substance dependence would have developed their problem only after becoming homeless.

It will be interesting to see the actual report and analysis of it:

A report on homelessness in Melbourne has shattered two key myths: that substance abuse and mental illness are the major reasons why people become homeless….

About 43 per cent had problems with substance use while 30 per cent reported mental health problems. Of these, 66 per cent and 53 per cent respectively had developed the problems after becoming homeless.