In Britain, the number of homeless people who engage in rough sleeping increases every year. Rough sleepers in Britain usually carry their beddings to places such as car parks, stairwells, stations, streets, and derelict boats and houses. The longer an individual sleeps rough, the harder it is for him or her to make the decision to pursue a course of life that will help him or her to find decent shelter and progress in life.
The research into rough sleepers in Britain is necessary because there are not many studies that have been conducted into determining how the needs of youthful rough sleepers differ from those of adult rough-sleepers. There are definite differences between the needs of these two groups. The aim of this literature review is to investigate the causes and effects of rough sleeping among youthful as well as adult citizens. There are usually multidimensional aspects that contribute to rough-sleeping. However, the factors that contribute towards adult homelessness and subsequent rough-sleeping are usually quite different from those that result in the same consequences among the youth. The study comes against a backdrop of increasing numbers of rough sleepers. According to a research documented by Department for Communities and Local Government (2011), in 2011 alone, approximately 2200 rough- sleepers slept in London’s streets every night. Other independent studies have suggested that the ongoing challenges faced by the British economy will only increase the numbers of rough-sleepers; however, these researches do not make distinctions between the youthful and adult rough-sleepers.
According to St. Mungo’s report, which was documented by Department for Communities and Local Government (2011), nearly half of Britain’s rough sleepers have alcohol and drug dependency problems. In addition, most rough sleepers usually have physical or mental disabilities which could stop them from seeking help in government-run shelters.