Competing representations of Youth homelessness: Media Vs. Advocacy Discourses Introduction Youth homelessness in Canada is a paradoxical reality: although the country has the high GDP, the large economy and the high consumption rate in the North America and even the whole world, there are still a large number of young people who have to face the lack of basic living conditions, such as employment and housing. Today, youth homelessness, which is recognized as a serious social issue in Canada, has been fiercely debated in various scholars and media. However, while recognizing and analyzing youth homelessness in Canadian society, different parties always demonstrate their own arguments from different views of point or through a variety of representations. This paper will compare different representations of youth homelessness in the city of Vancouver in various language carriers including scholarly articles and the websites of non-government or non-profit organizations. Methodology
This paper is a comparative study. The paper tries to compare different representations of youth homelessness in as scholarly articles and the websites. Through the comparison, this paper shows discussion and findings shown in following sections. Discussion and Findings
There are many non-government or non-profit organizations which make great efforts to prevent youth homelessness in Canada. And, these organizations usually take advantage of their websites to represent the issues of youth homelessness. For example, according to the statistics of Covenant House Vancouver (2012), currently, there are over 500 - 1000 young people who are in a homeless situation in Vancouver. This is only a conservative estimate because this number does not cover up the hidden homeless young people who live in deplorable conditions, sleep on park benches, or bounce from home to home. Based on previous experience in promoting the decrease of youth homelessness in Vancouver, Vancouver Foundation (2012) summarizes two main lessons: Firstly, though various social organizations provide housing supports for homeless young people through providing the first month’s rent and deposit or signing the lease, the situation of youth homelessness is still not effectively alleviated because of great lack of sufficient funds for rent and significant lack of affordable housing units. Actually, this is a long-term process for those who are experiencing the transition from single homeless youth into self-sufficiency and also a very complex process for the family because of inevitable conflicts between the needs of the mother, the needs of the children and the needs of other family members (Vancouver Foundation, 2012). Thus, the youth who are homeless and cannot afford basic support and housing services in the city have to live on park benches, in shelters or on the streets during their rest life. 这里加一点advocate group Moreover, Streetohome Foundation (2012) points out that the lack of affordable housing alternatives is the direct cause leading to youth homelessness in the city of Vancouver. As a result of homelessness, a lot of young people have to living in insecure and unsafe housing conditions which further lead to other social problems such as mental diseases or drug taking (Youth Vital Signs, 2012). Based on these examples, in general, these non-government or non-profit organizations mainly engage in providing financial or non-financial supports to those homeless youth in order to help them out of current poor situation. So, the representations of youth homelessness for the websites of these non-government or non-profit organizations always focus on the lessons derived from their previous efforts and contributions on preventing youth homelessness and their current measures or strategies which are used to change the youth’s poor situation. (这些和languge没有关系)That is to say, the representations of youth homelessness for these websites focuses mainly on the surface phenomenon of...
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