This scoping review sets out the case for why ending youth homelessness needs to be a public and political priority. It pulls together key information on the scale, causes and impacts of youth homelessness on young people themselves and wider society.
This scoping review sets out the case for why ending youth homelessness needs to be a public and political priority. It pulls together key information on the scale, causes and impacts of youth homelessness on young people themselves and wider society. Between March and June 2022, Centrepoint will be building on this review to explore, identify and develop the solutions needed to tackle youth homelessness. We are calling on the government, political parties, charities, campaign groups and the wider public across society to back our campaign and commit to breaking the cycle of youth homelessness.
Key findings and recommendations
- Youth homelessness continues to be a major issue in the UK, and severely affects the health, wellbeing and development of vulnerable young people at a critical time in their transition to independence.
- There are strong links between experiences of youth homelessness and ongoing homelessness and exclusion in later life, as well as evidence of significant impacts and costs to wider public services associated with youth homelessness.
- While rates of youth homelessness have remained stable over several decades, there is some evidence that the number of young people experiencing homelessness has seen a slight increase in recent years, including the numbers of young people seeking help from their local authority.
- Developments in housing and homelessness policy and case law over the last two decades have improved services and options for young people facing homelessness. However, there is evidence that welfare reforms and wider austerity measures over the same period have negatively impacted on efforts to prevent, reduce and tackle youth homelessness.