How significantly, if at all, does austerity and social policy impact on the professional practice of homeless organisation service providers?
In recent years the British and Scottish government have been undertaking strict austerity measures and the restructuring of social care legislation. A specific area that has seen significant cuts to the funding available and implications due to changing social policy, are homeless organisations (Jones and Meegan et. al. 2016). In order to gain a deep insight into the effects on the third sector I have conducted a qualitative phenomenological study on the lived experiences of service providers within a variety of homeless organisations throughout Scotland. This project asks; how significantly, if at all, does austerity and social policy impact on the professional practice of homeless organisation service providers? This research looks at the impact of austerity and social policy on service providers with additional identified impacting factors of emotional labour and urban and rural locational challenges. The following research draws upon the analysis of 3 semi-structured interviews and a speech from a CEO of a homeless organisation. By using these data sets as primary knowledge I aim to create an understanding of the potential ways in which service providers experience an impact on their professional practice. In addition to the analysis of these experiences I will draw upon relevant literature in order to contextualise the data to the current environment within the third sector. The research design consists of qualitative methods with a phenomenological approach being used primarily to mine deep into the current environment of the third sector and create an understanding of how homelessness is affected on a service level. By looking at the issue of providing services to those experiencing homeless from a service providers perspective the multi-dimensional issues that are layered deep within homelessness are explored. Overall, the following research looks to create a broad understanding of how the participants have their professional practice impacted upon by a multitude of factors.