Dennis Culhane, PhD, Homeless Veterans Program
LDI Senior Fellow Dennis Culhane's role in a VA-supported think tank focused on the homeless veteran issue is the subject of a Philadelphia Inquirer article.
|Dennis Culhane, PhD|
Culhane, PhD and authority on the overall issue of homelessness, is a Professor of Social Work at Penn's School of Social Policy & Practice; Professor of Psychology at the Perelman School of Medicine; and Professor of Policy Research and Evaluation at Penn's Graduate School of Education.
150,000 a year
Culhane said that about one in four of everyone who serves in the military ends up homeless once they return to civilian life -- or about 150,000 veterans gone homeless every year.
A new report in USA Today details how suicides have reached historic levels among both veterans and active duty personnel but that the rate among young veterans just out of the service and receiving health care is nearly three times that of active duty troops.
In 2009, the VA provided the funds for Culhane and colleagues to launch the National Center on Homelessness Among Veterans, which is located near the West Philadelphia VA Medical Center.
Culhane explains that many of the veterans who are homeless also suffer from mental illness and/or various types of addiction. In the past, management strategies have focused on making treatment the top priority. But now that has changed.
Culhane said that the most effective programs that ultimately alter homeless veterans' situation are the provision of stable housing and then the medical, behavioral and other services required to stabilize their lives.