Are ‘fair share’ policies fair to the homeless? A critical assessment of distributive siting policies in the Netherlands

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15 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Policymakers’ fears of an increased concentration of marginalised
and disadvantaged groups in already vulnerable urban neighbourhoods have
prompted recent measures to combat the spatial concentration of human
service facilities. In many cities, distributive siting policies have aimed to
achieve a more equal distribution of homelessness facilities across areas. This
article provides a critical assessment of the ‘fair share’ criteria that are in use
in Dutch siting policies. It brings to the surface the normative and political
nature of these criteria that often remains implicit in such policies. The research
shows that policy is dominated by discourse focusing on the potentially
negative effects these facilities may have on surrounding neighbourhoods in
terms of safety and security. As a consequence, the perspective of homeless
people is in danger of being overlooked by policymakers, risking a reduced
accessibility to service facilities. This article develops an analytical framework
that can be used to study fair share siting policies, and provides policymakers
with guidelines for assessing where services should be located.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)15-40
JournalEuropean Journal of Homelessness
Volume8
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2014

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