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Social Problems


Social problem is being regarded as the state or condition which influence many people of community. The social problem which occur in the community will be considered as undesirable and hence it demands immediate action from the side of government. However, if the government does not take any action with regard to the same at that time economic efficiency of the country will be impacted in a negative way (Best, 2010).

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Social problem is totally different from the individual problem. As Stuart Isaacs has specified in his book that the difficulties which revolves around an individual will not be considered or being counted under the category of social problem (Isaacs, 2014). For example, the problem such as personal trauma, relationship problem and financial trouble are being counted under the category of individual problem. However, this does not mean that all individual problems does not come under category of social problem (Tsemberis, 2011). For example, there are some issues which happens with the individual person, but still these comes under the class of social problem. Such problems include racism, unemployment, homophobia, poverty and homelessness etc. In addition to this, Stuart Isaacs and other authors have also entailed that the problem will become the social problem when it tends to affect the large number of individuals who live in society.

In this regard, it can be said that the chosen social problem for the present essay is related with homelessness. In this regard, Stuart Isaacs have explored different reasons behind the occurrence of cited problem such as homelessness. The major reasons which it has identified is related with poverty and unemployment. In this regard, as per the view point of Kidd, (2007) people become homeless when they do not have any source of generating the income. In addition to this, social exclusion is another factor which is identified by Stuart Isaacs in his book as the issue behind homelessness in United kingdom. Social exclusion is the practice of excluding the people from the society.

Most Common Cause

There are number of instances happen which restrict individual from the rights and opportunities being taken by other person. Here, one of the most common cause for the same is person belonging to the minority group (Robertson and Greenblatt, 2013). Due to the given circumstances, respective individual will be excluded from availing different social rights and one of the most common consequences of the same is homelessness. Hence, it is very essential for the government of UK that it should take necessary actions with regard to the given problem. This is because, if not taken then in the given circumstance the problem could become worst and the impact of same will be seen upon the economy of the nation in an effective way. In accordance with the given context, as per the view point of Fitzpatrick and Jones (2005) homelessness is often confused with rough sleepers, but it is not correct. Rough sleepers is being regarded as one of the component of homelessness. However, according to the view point of Crane and, (2005) homelessness is the condition in which people does not have any place which they can call as home. This does not mean that the people who does not home will likely to sleep in street only. This is because, they have some other options too such as sleeping in hostel and friend home.

Besides this, there are some other reasons explored for the condition such as homelessness in UK which have not being identified by Stuart Isaacs and other authors. Caton and, (2005) have stated that homelessness is caused by complex interconnection between person's individual circumstances and different structural factors which are outside the control of person. Hence, it is correct to said that it is not necessary that unemployment, social exclusion and poverty are being regarded as the three main problem behind homelessness in UK. In this regard, Hyde, (2005) has depicted that there are some individual factors also which takes shelter from the head of person and as a result of it they become homeless. The individual factors consist of lack of social support, the condition such as debt, relationship break down and poor mental and health condition etc.

Homelessness is the major social problem

In addition to this, the problem which occur in the family also lead to the condition like homelessness. For example, a small disputes which happens between the members of family will lead to breakdown the relationship between different them. Hence, there are several consequences associated with the given dispute and among all one of the major consequence is related with the homelessness. Furthermore, there are some structural causes also which leads to the homelessness and it includes unemployment, poverty, housing policies and lack of affordable housing etc (What causes homelessness?, 2016). In this context, it has been seen that with an aim to build a home an individual will require sufficient amount of money. If they will not get that the most common cause of the same will be homelessness. Hence, in order to fulfill the need relating to the money, person will tend to indulge themselves in some other illegal activities such as drug selling and stealing thing from others etc.

Hence, it is correct to said that the homelessness is the major social problem in UK. This is because, it tends to impact the several aspects of society. Moreover, it will also hamper the culture as well as social environment of the nation.

Herein, it has been explored by the Kemp, Neale and Robertson (2006) that men on an average experience chronic homelessness than any other group. However, it has been evaluated by the Fitzpatrick (2005) that the new study reveals some new facts about the homelessness. In this context, it is assessed that there is a significant change is being seen in the demographic profile of the homelessness population. Herein, it is assessed that at present homelessness individual profile includes women, children, unemployed people and mentally disabled person etc. Moreover, the variation which occur in the economic environment of the country also leads to cause the situation like homelessness. For example, significant decline in the demand of one industry or sector will leave many people unemployed. Due to this, it becomes difficult for them with regard to obtain their income.

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The above figure also dictate the factors which give hype to the condition such as homelessness. Hence, from the above figure it can be concluded that alcohol and drug addition results into drug addition (Greenberg and Rosenheck, 2008). This is because, it has been seen that the people who get indulge into the drug addition type of activity will be excluded from the society. Hence, among given factor drug and alcohol is the major one.

From the above analysis it is correct to said that the homelessness is being regarded as one of the most critical issue in United Kingdom. In this context, the statistics of 2014 states that there are around 112070 people in UK are homeless (The homelessness crisis in England: a perfect storm, 2016). In addition to this, there is a significant increment is also being identified number of people to spend their nights in street. Here, the number of individual who are sleeping in rough has grown by 75%. The given statistics indicate that the homelessness is the matter of concern for the government of UK. However, it is duty of local council that it should make measures for some people of the society such as children, pregnant women, mentally disabled person and old people etc. It is due to the fact that they are the people who are vulnerable to the different type of abuses (Turnbull, Muckle and Masters, 2007). Hence, significant action with respect to the given people will not being carried out by the government, at that time there are huge chances that some new social problem will be emerge within country. The problem could be increase incidents of rape and other criminal activities etc. Thus, significant control over the social problem is necessary.

The above figure provides the description about the homeless cases in England. In this regard, it is assessed that the red line shows very stable hype in the number of homelessness cases in UK. Furthermore, the line become constant between the year 2011-2012, 2012-2013 and respectively. However, there is a drastic change have been explored from the new line which is in green color. In this regard, it is analyzed that the line showcasing the increasing trend from the year 2009-2014.

The government of United Kingdom is also worried about the respective social problem. Thus, with an aim to deal out with the same government has formulated different regulations and policies. Here, by complying with the given type of activity only government of UK is trying to establish the control over the situation of homelessness in an effective way. In this context, the administration of nation has framed the acts like Homelessness act 2002 and Housing act 1996.

Amendments to abolish Social Issues

Housing act 1996 was the first act which was formulated by the government of United Kingdom with an aim to take action towards the aforementioned social issue. The Housing act 1996 was formulated by the UK parliament (Neale, 2008). The given act entail that it is the duty and responsibility of the local council of the country that it should provide home to the people who are homeless. However, some amendments have been made in the given act and as a result of it entirely new act is formulated by the UK government which is called by the name of Homelessness act 2002. This act includes the major tactics which is being used by the government of UK in order to take the action towards the situation such as homelessness. In the given act, government has set some priority which is used with an aim to protect the people who does not have specific place which they can call as home (Horsell, 2006). For example, this act reveal that government should give first priority for giving home to the individual who have family. In addition to this, priority should be given to the 16-17 year old children and person who is violated by its family members etc.

In addition to this, the government have the housing policy for the old and vulnerable people. Here, with an aim to establish control over the condition like rough sleeping and providing the housing support to the old and disabled people number of actions has been specified by the government of UK in the respective policy. In this context, government of UK has constructed the specialized home which have all the facilities and amenities which is being needed by these persons. Furthermore, the government of nation also provides them sufficient funds. In addition to this, the Care act 2014 of UK also works under the given category. This act ensures that utmost care should be given to the person who are more vulnerable. Here, one of the measure of care also includes housing facility. Hence, it is correct to said that the act as being formulated by the government of UK is effective and appropriate as it helps government in terms of weeding the condition like homelessness from the nation in an effectual way.

From the above essay, it can be stated that it is very essential for the country's government that it should take all the social problem very seriously. This is because, one cannot assess that when a small problem of a single person will become the problem of other. In addition to this, the social problem have a direct impact upon the economy of nation. Hence, in order to maintain economic condition of nation, it is being required by the government that it should take timely action towards all the problems which is being incurred in front of it. The given thing is also done by the UK government. Here, for the purpose to deal with the respective issue UK government has framed different legal laws and regulations. Here, with the help of aforementioned legislation only, administration of nation is trying to establish the control over the problem in an effectual way (Hyde, 2005).


  • Best, R., 2010. Situation or Social Problem: The Infuence of Events on Media Coverage of Homelessness. Social Problems. 57(1). pp.74-91.
  • Fitzpatrick, S. and Jones, A., 2005. Pursuing social justice or social cohesion?: Coercion in street homelessness policies in England. Journal of Social Policy. 34(03). pp.389-406.
  • Fitzpatrick, S., 2005. Explaining homelessness: a critical realist perspective. Housing, Theory and Society. 22(1). pp.1-17.
  • Greenberg, G. A. and Rosenheck, R.A., 2008. Jail incarceration, homelessness, and mental health: A national study. Psychiatric services.
  • Horsell, C., 2006. Homelessness and social exclusion: A Foucauldian perspective for social workers. Australian Social Work. 59(2). pp.213-225.
  • Hyde, J., 2005. From home to street: Understanding young people's transitions into homelessness. Journal of adolescence. 28(2). pp.171-183.
  • Kidd, S.A., 2007. Youth homelessness and social stigma. Journal of youth and adolescence. 36(3). pp.291-299.
  • Neale, J., 2008. Homelessness, drug use and hepatitis C: a complex problem explored within the context of social exclusion. International Journal of Drug Policy. 19(6). pp.429-435.
  • Robertson, M.J. and Greenblatt, M., 2013. Homelessness: A national perspective. Springer Science & Business Media.
  • Toro, P.A., 2007. Toward an international understanding of homelessness. Journal of Social Issues. 63(3). pp.461-481.
  • Tsemberis, S., 2011. Housing First: The pathways model to end homelessness for people with mental illness and addiction manual. European Journal of Homelessness.
  • Turnbull, J., Muckle, W. and Masters, C., 2007. Homelessness and health. Canadian Medical Association Journal. 177(9). pp.1065-1066.
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