Relationship between adverse childhood experiences and adult homelessness: A secondary analysis of behavioral risk factor surveillance system data
Previous research linking adverse childhood experiences and adult homelessness has been based largely on cross-sectional retrospective studies that use homeless samples or samples of individuals reporting childhood adversity. The complexity of the relationship between adverse childhood experiences and adult homelessness, along with the limitations inherent in the existing literature exploring this relationship, underscores the value of a population-based design based on probability sampling, which allows an evaluation of the relationship between childhood experience and adult outcomes considering the full range of possible outcomes (i.e., history of childhood adversity or not, history of homelessness or not).
Using data collected through the Washington State Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS), using a probability-based sample representative of the general population, this study will assess the relationship between adverse childhood experiences and three measures of adult homelessness: (a) any time spent living in a homeless situation since age 18, (b) frequent or chronic homelessness, and (c) current housing instability among individuals with a history of homelessness. Findings from logistic regression analyses indicate that childhood adversity predicts increased odds of adult homelessness; further, accumulation of adverse childhood experiences is related to increased risk of adult homelessness.
Learning Areas:Public health or related research
Assess previous findings related to adverse childhood experiences and outcomes measured in adulthood. Evaluate the relationship between childhood adversity and three measures of adult homelessness.
Keyword(s): Homelessness, Child Abuse
Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have been conducting research on homelessness among a variety of populations for more than 10 years.
Any relevant financial relationships? No
I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.