Social Policy and Society

Themed Section on Exploring Multiple Exclusion Homelessness

Interagency Working to Support the Health of People Who Are Homeless

Louise Jolya1, Claire Goodmana2, Katherine Froggatta3 and Vari Drennana4

a1 Social Care Workforce Research Unit, King's College London E-mail: louise.joly@pobox.com

a2 Centre for Research in Primary and Community Care, University of Hertfordshire E-mail: c.goodman@herts.ac.uk

a3 School of Health and Medicine, University of Lancaster E-mail: k.froggatt@lancaster.ac.uk

a4 Faculty of Health and Social Care Sciences, St. George's, University of London & Kingston University E-mail: v.drennan@sgul.kingston.ac.uk

Abstract

Interagency working is a recurrent theme in homelessness policy literature, but is ill defined and rarely addressed in UK homelessness research. This article draws on findings from a study that explored how interagency working is achieved between statutory and voluntary sector services concerned with improving the health of people experiencing homelessness. We argue that a focus on the health needs and behaviours perceived as being a risk to the general population directly influences interagency working and how professional networks organise themselves. The findings are discussed with reference to the impact of social policy on the health of people who are homeless.

(Online publication August 05 2011)