The McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act includes a definition of who is considered homeless for the purposes of this subtitle of the Act and, therefore, eligible for the rights and protections it provides.
The guiding phrase of the definition states that children and youth who “lack a fixed, regular, and adequate nighttime residence” are considered homeless. The definition then specifies some living arrangements that would be considered a homeless situation due to not meeting the fixed, regular, and adequate standard. Examples include children and youth who are sharing the housing of others due to loss of housing, economic hardship, or a similar reason; children and youth who are staying in a motel or hotel due to lack of adequate alternative accommodations; children and youth who are living in an emergency or transitional shelter; and many other situations.
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