35 Critical Soc. Pol'y 3 (2015)

handle is hein.journals/critsplcy35 and id is 1 raw text is: 


Rights, responsibilities and
refusals:   Homelessness policy and
the  exclusion of single homeless
people with complex needs

University of York, England

Nottingham Trent University, England

Since 1977 homelessness legislation in England has offered limited statu-
tory accommodation  rights to unintentionally homeless people who are
judged to be in priority need and able to demonstrate a local connec-
tion. Using data generated in interviews with homeless people and staff
working to support them,  this paper considers the impact of current
homelessness  policy and practice and explores how  decisions about
intentionality, priority need and local connection serve to exacerbate
the social exclusion experienced by single homeless people with multiple
support needs. It is concluded that a more genuinely inclusive welfare
state will only emerge when, and if, policymakers and wider society are
able to abandon their current fixation with using welfare policy to pun-
ish 'irresponsible' behaviour and refocus instead on providing services to
adequately meet the basic needs of marginalised people.

Corresponding author:
Peter Dwyer, Department of Social Policy and Social Work, University of York, Heslington, York,
YO10 5DD, England.
Email: peter.dwyer@york.ac.uk
Critical Social Policy  The Author(s) 2014 Reprints and permissions: sagepub.co.uk/journalsPermissions.nav
DOI: 10.1177/0261018314546311 csp.sagepub.com

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