What America Believes About Homelessness

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There is a direct line between how the public views homelessness and the policy choices leaders make. Many blame homelessness on the person experiencing it rather than the shortage of affordable housing, lack of a living wage, childhood trauma, expensive and inaccessible health care, or the countless other reasons that make a person vulnerable to losing their home. This gap between public perceptions and reality creates a cycle of misunderstanding that reduces public support for the policies needed to solve this crisis.

In September of 2020, the nonprofit Invisible People surveyed over 2,500 respondents across 16 cities to understand public attitudes about homelessness, policy preferences, and how the public interprets messages about homelessness. This research explores what people are currently hearing and outlines messaging strategies to reach different public audiences. For policymakers, advocates, service providers, and anyone else working to end homelessness, this report is a useful tool in building the public support and political will needed to help end homelessness.

See below to read or download the full report.

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