Dalhousie Law Journal


homeless, street, courts, research, disadvantages, resiliency, agency, hinder, stifle


This research explores what can be learned about the experiences of streetinvolved people by reading cases that deal with people characterized on the record as "homeless." The author builds on existing empirical research by reading a large body of cases to discuss pathways to and experiences of street involvement. She proceeds to more closely explore cases regarding people (1) who are identified in the cases as homeless, and (2) find themselves before the courts for having engaged in income generating activities. The author argues that cases constitute knowledge about street involvement in ways that may take us beyond what we already know from existing research. They can, for instance, reveal how cascading and compounding disadvantages are navigated on a daily basis, point to some of the ways in which people attempt to exhibit resiliency in the face of these experiences, and record how legal processes operate to stifle or hinder such expressions ofagency.

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