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    Changes in Physical Assault Among Adults Moving Into Permanent Supportive Housing

    Journal of Interpersonal Violence

    Year: 2019

    People experiencing homelessness experience high rates of physical assault. While this high risk for victimization is well established, there is no research that examines whether victimization rates change over time as persons transition into permanent supportive housing (PSH). Data are from a longitudinal study of adults moving into PSH in the Los Angeles, CA area. Interviews were conducted prior to or within 5 days of moving in, with follow-up interviews at 3, 6, and 12 months after move-in (n =370 participants completing all four interviews). Each interview assessed characteristics of past 3-month physical assault. Analyses examined change in rates of assault over time and differences by demographic subgroups. We also present findings on the most common locations and perpetrators of assault. Overall, rates of physical assault decreased after participants entered PSH. Statistically significant differences by subgroups varied by time point. Differences identified include higher rates of physical assault among Latino/a respondents, lower rates among African Americans, and higher rates of physical assault among lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) respondents. The most frequent location of assault was outside at baseline, 3- and 6-month time points. Strangers were the most common perpetrator at all time points. Rates of perpetration by neighbors nearly doubled from baseline to the 12-month time point, and inside locations for assault were most common at this time point as well. While PSH is an effective intervention in reducing chronic homelessness, it is important to consider other risks to overall health and well-being, such as physical victimization

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