Towards a psychosocial and cultural definition of Mexican homeless girls: a qualitative approach
AbstractHomeless women are one of the most vulnerable groups worldwide since they are victims of labor and sexual exploitation, abuse, discrimination and marginalization at a higher rate than the rest of the population. However, currently, Mexico lacks of an accurate definition of such social group, and their characteristics as well as the magnitude and dimensions of the phenomenon are only partially and superficially known. The purpose of this research was to develop and validate a typology of homeless women living in Mexico City. To fulfill this purpose, 300 in-depth interviews were conducted and examined thoroughly with a systematic analysis of the content. The main results indicate that homeless women constitute a social group immersed predominantly in circumstances of violence, marginalization, poverty and social exclusion. Also, this collective includes two subgroups: women at risk of homelessness and women emergency sheltered, unsheltered or absolutely homeless and living in places not intended for human habitation. With this typology it is possible to define, characterize and distinguish homeless women. In addition, the phenomenon can be known with more certainty and accuracy enabling, thus, the design of effective treatment strategies.
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