Long-term associations of homelessness with children's well-being

Marybeth Shinn, Judith S. Schteingart, Nathanial Chioke Williams, Jennifer Carlin-Mathis, Nancy Bialo-Karagis, Rachel Becker-Klein, Beth C. Weitzman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


To analyze long-term consequences of homelessness, the authors compared 388 formerly homeless children 55 months after shelter entry with 382 housed peers, birth to 17, using mother- and child-reported health, mental health, community involvement, cognitive performance, and educational records. Both groups scored below cognitive and achievement norms. Small group differences favored housed 4- to 6-year-olds on cognition and 4- to 10-year-olds on mental health only. Child care and recent stressful events, which were high, were as or more important than prior homelessness. Only children living with mothers were included, potentially biasing results. Policy implications are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)789-809
Number of pages21
JournalAmerican Behavioral Scientist
Issue number6
StatePublished - Feb 2008


  • Achievement
  • Children
  • Health
  • Homelessness
  • Longitudinal study

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Cultural Studies
  • Education
  • Sociology and Political Science
  • General Social Sciences


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