Homelessness and problem gambling are serious social issues in Australia and elsewhere. While a growing body of research has separately explored these issues there has been little research examining the relationship between homelessness and gambling, even though anecdotally service providers have noted a strong association between these issues. This paper explores the relationship between gambling and homelessness with reference to a qualitative study involving in-depth interviews with 17 service clients and 18 service providers. Findings suggest that gambling involvement may be a factor in becoming homeless through its negative impacts on financial resources, relationships and support networks. Gambling may also be a way of easing the conditions of being homeless by providing hope of financial gain, social connectedness and escape from stress. A better understanding of the role gambling plays in becoming and being homeless may assist service providers, governments and communities to develop more effective prevention, intervention and management strategies.
Holdsworth, L, Tiyce, M & Hing, N 2012, 'Exploring the relationship between problem gambling and homelessness: becoming and being homeless', Gambling Research: Journal of the National Association for Gambling Studies (Australia), vol. 23, no. 2, pp. 39-54.