One kind reader sent over a report by St Mungo's homeless charity called Battered Broken Bereft.
Homelessness is not an issue covered much on this site but at Christmas it seems apposite.
A few core figures stands out. Firstly that 81% of homeless clients of the charity are men and the biggest reason that men are homeless is due to relationship breakdown (42%). The report highlights that 35% of women who are made homeless due to domestic abuse and it would be interesting to see what the figure was for men.
What it revealed though on the relationship breakdown issue was to highlight another clear area of institutional discrimination against men.
Page 8 of the report states:
"Many men had waited until they were in desperate need before they approached the local authority. They had all approached housing advisors when they had no one else to turn to. Instead of getting the help they needed they were more often subject to petty wrangling by local authorities over who should take responsibility for them.
"The advice and support they did receive was more often to be given a list of telephone numbers, some of which were obsolete and some which were always engaged."
Can you seriously imagine the same situation for a woman - there would be a scandal. But here we have the equally scandalous situation but this time involving men. All we get are petty wranglings from councils not caring a jot because the person in front of them is a man.
Another example of the institutional discrimination that men face - made worse when dealing with the most vulnerable, like these men, in our society. We hope St Mungo's having identified this issue, now take it forward.
Posted by Skimmington