The National Center on Family Homelessness has released a report – America’s Youngest Outcasts – which presents data on child homelessness in the United States.
The report states that 2.5 million children experience homeless in the United States each year. The number of children experiencing homelessness increased by 8% across the country from 2012 to 2013, with over half the states in the nation reporting increases in child homelessness.
Connecticut ranks 12th out of the states in terms of overall score (extent of child homelessness, child well-being, risk for child homelessness, and state policy and planning efforts) and 16th for the risk for child homelessness. Notably, Connecticut ranks 1st for the extent of child homelessness. Connecticut has the fewest number of children experiencing homelessness relative to the state’s population; between 2012 and 2013, 5,508 children experienced homelessness in Connecticut.
The report details major causes of homelessness for children in the U.S. and promotes the following as effective responses:
- Safe affordable housing.
- Education and employment opportunities.
- Comprehensive needs assessments of all family members.
- Services that incorporate trauma-informed care.
- Attention to identification, prevention, and treatment of major depression in mothers.
- Parenting supports for mothers.
- Research to identify evidence-based programs and services.
Read the report here.