According to the National Coalition for the Homeless
, in 2017 about 38% of homeless individuals were alcohol dependent. Roughly 26% of them were addicted to other harmful substances. Another alarming fact is that today we are seeing more and more homeless people who are younger in age than ever before. If a younger person becomes homeless because of a home situation that has nothing to do with drugs or alcohol, chances are they will turn to drugs to survive life on the streets.
Homelessness and substance abuse seem to go hand-in-hand. Much of the reason for the younger population of homeless people is that they live with their parents who can no longer deal with their substance abuse. Many of these individuals are kicked out of their homes because their parents don’t know how to cope or help them. Many of them have nowhere else to go but the streets. A tremendous number of homeless young adults are victims of substance abuse.
Homelessness and Substance Abuse
Substance abuse is more common in the homeless population than in the general population. Homelessness is both, a cause and a result of substance abuse. Many times, homeless young adults will begin to sell drugs in exchange for food or other needed items. It is also known that many of these young adults turn to prostitution to gain drugs or alcohol as well as other necessities to survive life on the streets.
Then there are those homeless individuals who drink alcohol or use drugs as a way to escape the life they are living with no home or family. Even if they know that their reason for being homeless is because of their addiction to alcohol or drugs it is still a sad and miserable life for them. They may know that they chose alcohol or drugs over their responsibilities as a family member, but felt they could not stop the substance abuse.