Substance Use and Mental Health Problems among Street-involved Youth: The Need for a Harm Reduction Approach - Homeless Hub Research Summary Series

Street-involved and homeless youth experience more health problems than non-homeless youth, and particularly high rates of addiction and mental health problems. Despite this, use of available substance use and mental health services tends to be low among street-involved youth. This lack of service access may worsen already poor health and contribute to chronic homelessness. There is currently little understanding on the implications of co-occurring mental health and substance use issues for the service needs of homeless youth, as well as how this may vary by gender.

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Gaetz, S., O’Grady, B., Buccieri, K., Karabanow, J., & Marsolais, A. (Eds.), Youth Homelessness in Canada: Implications for Policy and Practice. Toronto: Canadian Homelessness Research Network Press.

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