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ERIC Number: EJ830354
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2009-Apr
Pages: 21
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 45
ISBN: N/A
ISSN: ISSN-0140-1971
The Initiation of Homeless Youth into the Street Economy
Gwadz, Marya Viorst; Gostnell, Karla; Smolenski, Carol; Willis, Brian; Nish, David; Nolan, Theresa C.; Tharaken, Maya; Ritchie, Amanda S.
Journal of Adolescence, v32 n2 p357-377 Apr 2009
Homeless youth (HY) who lack employment in the formal economy typically turn to the street economy (e.g., prostitution, drug selling) for survival. Guided by the theory of social control, the present paper explores factors influencing HY's initiation into the street economy. Eighty HY (ages 15-23) were recruited from four community-based organizations. All participated in structured interviews and 25% participated in qualitative interviews. Almost all HY had participated in the street (81%) and formal economies (69%). Five main factors simultaneously influenced initiation into the street economy: social control/bonds, barriers to the formal economy (e.g., homelessness, educational deficits, mental health problems, incarceration, stigma), tangible and social/emotional benefits of the street economy, severe economic need, and the active recruitment of HY into the street economy by others. Qualitative and quantitative data sources were congruent. Intervention efforts are needed at multiple levels of influence to promote HY's success in the formal economy. (Contains 2 figures and 3 tables.)
Elsevier. 6277 Sea Harbor Drive, Orlando, FL 32887-4800. Tel: 877-839-7126; Tel: 407-345-4020; Fax: 407-363-1354; e-mail: usjcs@elsevier.com; Web site: http://www.elsevier.com
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A