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Sociology, “the scientific study of society and human behaviour” (Henslin, Glenday, Duffy, & Pupo, 2009) includes five separate perspectives by which to observe people and their interactions with each other in society. These perspectives are particular observations that are placed into a conceptual framework which thus creates five sociological theories through which reality is interpreted in a distinct way. This paper will seek to analyze Edmonton’s homeless population through the functionalist perspective which is “based on the assumption that society is a stable, orderly system” (Kendall, Linden, & Murray, 2008) and examines a group’s functioning as a whole, with each part related to a whole. This paper will take into
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Another major cause of homelessness in Edmonton addressed by the committee is the lack of affordable housing available. According to the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (2008) in 1999, the average two bedroom apartment rental rate was $650/month, by 2008 the amount for the same two bedroom apartment had risen to an average of $1,170/month – an increase of 80%. The rental increase, coupled with the historically low rental availability of about 1.5% correlated directly with the “drastic decrease in rental incentives” (Avison Young, 2010); the same rental incentives that generally gave a renter a break on damage deposit, first month’s rent or utility payments. So a major increase in rent saw many people losing their homes; a substantial decrease in availability added to people not being able to find new homes; and the almost complete absence of rental incentives blocked those who found a place to rent from obtaining the rental unit. Mental health and addictions are also key factors when considering the causes of homelessness. Homeward Trust Edmonton, a broad-based community inspired initiative, states that 59% of homeless persons have a mental illness (2010) and “55% of the homeless population reported using one or more illegal
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