Interactions between group homes and neighbors: Neighbor preferences

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Group homes often are in conflict with their neighbors. Consequently, group home administrators tend to minimize contact between group homes and neighbors to reduce conflict. This study examined whether information about group homes and contact between homes and neighbors are related to neighbor problems as well as the preferences of potential neighbors about ways in which to become informed and involved with a group home if one were built in their neighborhood. Neighbors who interacted with residents and staff identified problems with group homes but showed fewer concerns about and had positive attitudes toward group homes generally. Potential neighbors wanted information about group homes entering their neighborhood, and preferred types of contact were associated with positive attitudes toward group homes. Group home administrators should consider neighbors as potential allies to help residents integrate into the community rather than as sources of conflict that must be avoided.

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