African-American Women's Health and Social Issues

By Catherine Fisher Collins | Go to book overview

8 African-American Homeless Women

Juanita K. Hunter

The primary causes of contemporary homelessness in the United States include lack of affordable housing and poverty. This crisis should be examined in light of the economic, political, and societal forces that have shaped the African-American experience in the United States. That experience was rooted in slavery, and although more than 300 years have elapsed since then, African-Americans have yet to rid themselves of the aftermath of inhuman bondage. Today, African-Americans continue to face persistent, discriminatory, and access barriers to the many resources that would enable complete self-actualization. On a daily basis, African- American women face gender bias from both African-Americans and the white majority.


BACKGROUND

Homelessness is not a new phenomenon for African-Americans and can be traced throughout the history of man. Historically, black slaves were often countryless, homeless, and were not recognized as persons in their own right. From the beginning of slavery, blacks were brought to America in bondage and concentrated in the South. The Civil War removed some of the restrictions on their mobility. The attitudes, laws, and discriminatory

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