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Signs that youth and family homelessness may be increasing in some Member States draw attention to the fact that services available to homeless people may not be adequately prepared for dealing with the specific needs of families with children and of young adults. Neither has youth and family homelessness been as widely explored in research as single homelessness.

In the currently unstable economic climate, it is recognised in Europe that this transition can have heightened risks because of young people’s precarious situation. There is also evidence to suggest that the economic and financial crisis is affecting families, who are finding themselves homeless on a much larger scale than observed before. What is more, young homeless people are particularly vulnerable (to exploitation and violence) on the streets and children of homeless families can grow up with physical and mental health problems more often than their housed peers.