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Examining mental capacity approaches to multiple exclusion homelessness


Our three-year SSCR-funded study ‘Strengthening Adult Safeguarding responses to homelessness and self-neglect’ (2019–2022) has generated rich data on attitudes and approaches to safeguarding people experiencing multiple exclusion homelessness (MEH).

One (emerging) finding from the study is professionals’ concern about attitudes and approaches to mental capacity among practitioners working with MEH. These professionals report that assessments may fail to be carried out because of the default assumption of capacity; because substance use may be dismissed as a ‘choice’ without professional inquiry; or because it is (mistakenly) believed that assessments cannot be carried out on the street.


This short project (2022-23) involves further analysis and write-up of the SSCR study findings relating specifically to mental capacity, with additional discussion with a small number of experts in the field.

Ethical clearance

Ethical clearance for this project was granted by King's College London on 30-11-22. Minimal Risk Registration Number: MRA-22/23-34816  

Related work in homelessness


A paper will be submitted to a peer-review journal.


NIHR School for Social Care Research

Project status: Ongoing

Principal investigators

Stephen Martineau

Research Fellow


  • MentalCapacity
  • Homelessness