Are the Danish People Changing their View on Homelessness?

Sidste nyt

Late 2015, Rådet for Socialt Udsatte (Council of Socially Vulnerable People) published a survey of the Danish people’s view of socially vulnerable people. The survey was carried out by the consultancy company Epinion on the basis of asking 1,013 representatives of the Danish population about their views on and attitude toward socially vulnerable people.

Homeless are one of the sub-groups of socially vulnerable people comprised by the survey, however briefly. In 2013, a similar representative segment of the Danish people was asked exactly the same question. This forms the basis of investigating whether the attitude towards homeless/homelessness has changed these past two years.

If you look at the graphs showing the attitude of the Danish people, they do not diverge much in a two-year period. Many have exactly the same attitude as they did two years ago. However, there are three interesting points of reduction.

To the question: If you are to pick one initiative, what do you believe will have the largest impact in order to reduce the number of homeless in Denmark, a significant number of respondents believe that society should ensure better help to mentally ill people compared to 2013.

The number has increased from approximately 10 percent in 2013 to 15 percent in 2015 – an increase that signifies that the Danes have become more aware of the face that there is a connection between mental illness and homelessness.

Another point of reduction also shows an interestering increase. The question was: Are you experiencing some of these feelings if you see homeless on the streets or in a public space? Twice as many of the young people (18 to 34-olds) in 2015 reply that they have a guilty conscience compared to 2013. In the age group, significantly more (almost 70 percent compared to little over 50 percent in 2013) reply that they feel sad about the insufficient help offered by society.

These answers show that the Danish people care about the development of society and relate morally to the challenges to society which homelessness represent.

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