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From Polish Homelessness Abroad   to Homelessness in Poland          Julia Wygnańska   Warsaw Council for the Homeless,   ...
IntroductionThe situation of Central and Eastern European (A8) work migrants who ended up ashomeless in the streets of Wes...
Hypothesis       Significant group of homeless people in European (Brussels, London, Oslo)and Polish (Warsaw, Tricity) cit...
Research on Polish immigrant population    General view of Polish immigrant population in GB is rather positive:    2006 E...
Research on Polish immigrant homeless groupsMostowska’s research on local groups of homeless Poles in Oslo and Brussels: (...
Research on Homeless groups in Polish cities2010 Wola pilot study of users of services for the homeless in Wola district(a...
Summary - common characteristicsResearch based (to some extent):  Originally come from somewhere else then the city they a...
Hypothesis – probably true but…Common characteristics can be observed…… but there is not enough data to confirm the hypoth...
Lessons from local policies/research on homeless Poles abroad to PL?  Accent on immigrants among homeless populations in E...
Some points on PL to abroadSignificant proportion of homeless people in Polish cities are work migrants who werehoping for...
ReferencesFihel, A., Grabowska-Lusińska, I., (2010) „Płynność powrotów do Polski. Studia Migracyjne - Przegląd Polonijny.Z...
„Small but significant proportion”?A8 nationals in London homelessness services – 2006 ¾ have A* nationals among clients, ...
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From Polish Homelessness Abroad to Homelessness in Poland

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Presentation given by Julia Wygnańska at a FEANTSA Research Conference on "Homelessness, Migration and Demographic Change in Europe", Pisa, Italy, 2011

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Transcript of "From Polish Homelessness Abroad to Homelessness in Poland"

  1. 1. From Polish Homelessness Abroad to Homelessness in Poland Julia Wygnańska Warsaw Council for the Homeless, Fundation for Social Innovation and Research „Shipyard” Interdisciplinary Center Sciences EUROPEAN RESEARCH CONFERENCE for peace’ Homelessness, Migration and Demographic Change in Europe Pisa, 16th September 2011
  2. 2. IntroductionThe situation of Central and Eastern European (A8) work migrants who ended up ashomeless in the streets of Western European cities has recently (2004-2010) been apoint of interest of homelessness research community as the phenomenon became anoticeable point on the agenda of support services and policy makers. As Homeless Link put it the A8 migrant constituted „small but significant proportion”The migrants from Poland caught a lot of attention.The condition of Polish migrants rough sleeping in European towns focused thedebate on homelessness in new EU member states around that subject leavingsomewhat behind the character of homelessness in their home countries.The aim of this presentation is to look for links between the above mentionedinterest of European audience to homelessness in the CEE countries: its nature,causes (data exists) and risk groups (how to find it?).The presentation stems from the perspective of local researcher from Poland and isbased on research available locally. EUROPEAN RESEARCH CONFERENCE Homelessness, Migration and Demographic Change in Europe Pisa, 16th September 2011
  3. 3. Hypothesis Significant group of homeless people in European (Brussels, London, Oslo)and Polish (Warsaw, Tricity) cities consists of people who share common characteristics in terms of causes to homelessness and support needs. They are work migrants who came to biger town in search of better employment, income and perspectives for quality of life. Some of them chosen to migrate to Warsaw and some to London, Oslo or Brussels… If so, the risk group which should be approached to prevent homelessness of Polish immigrants in EU cities and in Polish cities is the same. The above hypothesis is based on research presented on following 3 slaids. EUROPEAN RESEARCH CONFERENCE Homelessness, Migration and Demographic Change in Europe Pisa, 16th September 2011
  4. 4. Research on Polish immigrant population General view of Polish immigrant population in GB is rather positive: 2006 Eade, Drinkwater, Garapich: (1) Poles as a significant group among immigrants in GB also before 2004; (2) Poles called „Britan’s favourite migrants” 2011 Frelak, Fomina, „Image/Opinions on Poland nd Poles in GB” Quantitative study on representative sample of British People: (1) general opinion on the presence of Poles in GB is positive. (2) Typical immigrant is believed to be a reliable and honest although unskilled worker. (3) Causes to immigration: better employment, new life experience (but not running away from unemployment in home country*). Poles emigrate becasue they want to not because they are pressed by the lack of perspectives. 2010 Fihel, Grabowska-Lusińska, article on fluency of returns to Poland: (1) Data on remigration suggests that we should rather talk on the mobility of Poles within EU then on migration of Poles.*Ośrodek Badań nad Migracjami UW: 47% of people who emigrated from Poland after 2004 were employed, 22% unemployed. WHO SLEEPS ON THE STREETS THEN? EUROPEAN RESEARCH CONFERENCE Homelessness, Migration and Demographic Change in Europe Pisa, 16th September 2011
  5. 5. Research on Polish immigrant homeless groupsMostowska’s research on local groups of homeless Poles in Oslo and Brussels: (1)Characteristics: family conflicts, arrival in search for employment, lack of socialnetworks (esp. bridging social capital), low (or none) service use due tocommunication problems (language).Bowpitt et al. studies on Polish subsample of service users in London andNottingham: male, all with alcohol issues. (1) Causes to (street) homelessness:informal employment e.g. loss of tied accommodation with loss of empl; prisonepisodes, alcoholism related problems. (2) Barriers to accessing (housing) support:legal/registration problems (statutory, local connection); language.Goryńska-Bittner, Barka Network: (1) Causes to homelessness among immigrants:socio-economic situation in the home country, (unemployment, eviction), socialpathologies (alcoholism, crime, domestic violence), councious choice of a (homeless)life style -> „Polish immigrants sometimes choose homelessness as an escape fromthe past, which is believed to be unique for this nation only”. EUROPEAN RESEARCH CONFERENCE Homelessness, Migration and Demographic Change in Europe Pisa, 16th September 2011
  6. 6. Research on Homeless groups in Polish cities2010 Wola pilot study of users of services for the homeless in Wola district(about 35% all services in town) (flow for 3 years = 4380): avarage registered nightstock in shelters and nightshelters 308, 342 in all services, 36% aged 51-60, mostlymen, over 80% are lonely/solitary (divorced, serparated or single); non-polishcitizenship 3%; registered local connection in Warsaw 39%, in Mazowia outsideWarsaw 22%, other voivodships 39%.2003-9 Pomeranian survey (comaprison of data from 4 surveys) on max 2620people clasiffied as homeless in the Pomeranian Region (flow unavailable):geographical origin/local connection – not summarised; dominating age group 37%51-60; causes to homelessness (‘not up to the homeless person’) eviction 43%, beingturned onto the street by the family 29%, loss of employment 20%. Causes (‘up tothe homeless person’): alcoholism 36%; bad health 23%; marriage breakdown due tothe homeless person’s behaviour 23%; own choice (sic!) 23%.2011 Client register from a Warsaw shelter for single men. Shelter uses clientdatabase from Wola Pilot Study based on MPHASIS and ETHOS (flow for 3 years571): registered local connection out of Warsaw 75%, non-polish citizenship >1%;causes to homelessness: personal (alcohol included) 35%, conflict in afamily/household 43%; support needs: alcohol dependancy diagnosed 29%,suspected 25%, lack of everyday occupation 68%. EUROPEAN RESEARCH CONFERENCE Homelessness, Migration and Demographic Change in Europe Pisa, 16th September 2011
  7. 7. Summary - common characteristicsResearch based (to some extent): Originally come from somewhere else then the city they are homeless in - usually smaller cities which lack life perspectives. Hoping for good/better employment as major motivation for migration. Emplyment believed to be a key to success (as opposed to social networks or housing options). Lack of social networks and bridging social capital. Alcohol related problems (alcoholism, low selfesteem, depression). Legal/registration problems (lack of documents, unclear legat status in therms of eligibility for support)Additional: Poor competence in communication (foreign language abroad or problems communicating with services and dealing with institutions in a home country) EUROPEAN RESEARCH CONFERENCE Homelessness, Migration and Demographic Change in Europe Pisa, 16th September 2011
  8. 8. Hypothesis – probably true but…Common characteristics can be observed…… but there is not enough data to confirm the hypothesis…… however there is enough data to justify the need for research on the riskgroups which is necessary to prevent homelessness of migrants whobecame homeless in European (Polish included) cities.The risk group can be defined as (1) people who are not satisfied with theiremplyment and life opportunities (2) see the solution in migration to biggertown (3) live in small towns in Poland (4) have low social capital.Example of research on potencial risk group: Rakowski „Łowcy, zbieracze,praktycy niemocy” (Hunters, Collectors, Practitioners of Incapacity), 2007 EUROPEAN RESEARCH CONFERENCE Homelessness, Migration and Demographic Change in Europe Pisa, 16th September 2011
  9. 9. Lessons from local policies/research on homeless Poles abroad to PL? Accent on immigrants among homeless populations in EU cities. In PL immigtrants are conceptualised as a separate group from the homeless eventhough they might be on the streets or in marginal housing situation. Proporton of immigrants amoung homless service users is marginal (up to 3% declare citizenship other then Polish). eg. Web pages for immigrants within webpages of services for homeless people (Homelesslink). In Poland alcohol dependancy is often understood as a cause to homelessness and a choice of a lifestyle (PL – Goryńska-Bittner) whereas in GB it is researched as a support need (GB - Bowpitt) and a disease which should be adequately treated (e.g. core variables on homelessness by MPHASIS). Conducting research on homelessness in order to provide baseline for effective policy (PL concentration on stock and point in time measures). Social capital as an important term/theory which should be used to characterise homeless population in PL. EUROPEAN RESEARCH CONFERENCE Homelessness, Migration and Demographic Change in Europe Pisa, 16th September 2011
  10. 10. Some points on PL to abroadSignificant proportion of homeless people in Polish cities are work migrants who werehoping for improvements but were not able to succeed => they are also in Poland notonly in London, Brussels and Oslo!In Poland employment and family reunion are considered top options for supportinghomeless people in getting out of homelessness. (Like one of Bowpitt’s respondentspointed out): “Number one is work [then] room is no problem because I go to workand will pay you £40 or £35 per week no problem, because I work and am makingmoney”. EUROPEAN RESEARCH CONFERENCE Homelessness, Migration and Demographic Change in Europe Pisa, 16th September 2011
  11. 11. ReferencesFihel, A., Grabowska-Lusińska, I., (2010) „Płynność powrotów do Polski. Studia Migracyjne - Przegląd Polonijny.Zeszyt 4/2010, Instytut Badań nad Migracjami, Warszawa, http://www.migracje.uw.edu.pl/publ/1506/Frelak, J., Fomina J. (2011) „Wizerunek Polski i Polaków w Wielkiej Brytanii”, Instytut Spraw Publicznych ISP,Wygnańska, J., „Wolski Pilotaż” Fundacja Pracownia Badań i Innowacji Społecznych Stocznia, Warszawawww.bezdomnosc.edu.pl (expected)PFWB (2010) „Najważniejsze wyniki badań socjodemograficznych dla Województwa Pomorskiego. Lata 2003-2009”, http://www.pfwb.org.pl/wp-content/uploads/2010/02/Wyniki-badania-socjodemograficznego-2009-porownanie.pdfEade, J., Drinkwater, M., Garapich, S., (2006) Poles Apart? EU Enlargement and the LabourMarket Outcomes of Immigrants in the UK, IZA DP No. 2410Mostowska, M. (2010) Migration networks and homelessness. Pathways through rooflessness of Polish migrantsin Oslo, ENHR 2010, 4-7 July, ISTANBULMostowska, M. (2010) „Using Services for the Homeless Abroad. Polish Rough Sleepers in Brussels and Oslo” ,presentation for FEANTSA Research Conference 2010 in BudapestBowpit, G., Dwyer, P., Sundin, E., Weinstein, M., (2010) „Land of opportunity? Comparing street homelessexperiences between Polish migrants and UK citizens in two British cities”, presentation for FEANTSA ResearchConference 2010 in BudapestGoryńska-Bittner, B. (2010) „Diagnosis of a scale and nature of homelessness relating to Poles living in Europe”,working paper, Barka Network EUROPEAN RESEARCH CONFERENCE Homelessness, Migration and Demographic Change in Europe Pisa, 16th September 2011
  12. 12. „Small but significant proportion”?A8 nationals in London homelessness services – 2006 ¾ have A* nationals among clients, about 15% clients are A8 andmajority of 68% are Polish;A majority of services found that A8 nationals faced problems of accommodation, employment, language difficulties and lackof knowledge of the UK system. Much fewer saw A8 nationals with support needs normally associated with rough sleepingsuch as drug or alcohol misuse or mental and physical health problems.November 2007 – Out of the 402 rough sleepers recorded in total that week, 74 of them were from Central & EasternEurope. Za homeless link Central and Eastern European Rough Sleepers in London: Baseline SurveyNovember 2008 - Out of the 508 rough sleepers recorded 126 (25%) of them were from Central and Eastern Europe.2011 London has the highest number of rough sleepers, with a total of 415. 12 Local Authorities in London conducted streetcounts between October - November 2010, finding 262 people sleeping rough. The other 21 Local Authorities submittedrough sleeping estimates with a total of 153 rough sleepers. In London 26% - 8% more then the year before are A8nationals.The CHAIN database, a London-based recording system that records figures on rough sleepers, show that 3’673 peoplewere seen rough sleeping in the Capital last year. This is 201 more than the previous year.Homeless link – small but significant proportion of A8 migrants are ending up homeless and destitute in London- 2006. EUROPEAN RESEARCH CONFERENCE Homelessness, Migration and Demographic Change in Europe Pisa, 16th September 2011
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