Working papers

publications under review & work in progress

Smith, Curtis, Ernesto Castaneda and Jonathan Klassen. "The Prevalence of Mental Illness among the Homeless." 

Research on homelessness and mental health often uses ambiguous definitions of mental health. Our research question was whether prior studies of mental illness among homeless populations may have over-counted individuals with severe mental illnesses. We measure varying degrees of mental illness among homeless populations, using two different surveys and methodologies. As is common in homeless research, we use a Point-in-Time (PIT) census to count and survey homeless people. Our census of 676 homeless individuals in El Paso, Texas includes more street homeless and marginally housed individuals than the official count. We used the same PIT survey as Housing and Urban Development’s (HUD) survey except for the important addition of novel questions we designed to better delineate symptoms and diagnosis of mental illness according to severity. Our second survey, Health & Mobility survey, collected data from 1,250 residents of El Paso, Texas, including 413 residents that sleep in the streets, shelters, coaches, cars, or parks. Our findings show that homeless people report similar rates of mental illness as the general population, contrary to stereotypes and previous research findings. We also describe and discuss how typical methodologies over-report serious mental illness among the homeless by equating a few general symptoms of any mental illness (AMI) as defined in the DSM-IV with serious mental illness (SMI). 

Castañeda, Ernesto, and Natalie Schwarz.* “Immigration to Switzerland: Right Wing Opposition and Immigrant Anti-mobilizing Discourses.”

Castañeda, Ernesto, Curtis Smith,* and Brian Diedrich.* “How to Conduct Ethical Research with the Homeless.”

Zamora-Kapoor, Anna and Ernesto Castañeda. “A cross-regional analysis of anti-immigrant sentiment.”

Castañeda, Ernesto. “Differences in Mental Health Indicators between Native-Born and Foreign-Born Hispanic Populations.”

Castañeda, Ernesto, Curtis Smith, Holly Mata, Maria Flores, Hector Olvera, and William Medina-Jerez. “Housing that Really Works: Immigrant Integration and Public Housing in the Southwest.”