Ending Family Homelessness through Housing First (Rapid Rehousing)

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1 Ending Family Homelessness through Housing First (Rapid Rehousing) Presented by Beyond Shelter 1200 Wilshire Blvd, Suite 600 Los Angeles, CA 90017

2 Emergency shelters and transitional housing are simply stepping stones. If at the end of our interventions and our support, the homeless are still homeless or at risk of another episode of homelessness then what have we really accomplished?

3 Homelessness ends when an individual or family is stabilized in permanent, affordable housing, whatever that permanent housing type may be and whatever the support systems that must be in place to help them stay there.

4 NAEH 10-YEAR PLAN In 2000, The National Alliance to End Homelessness produced a Ten Year Plan to End Homelessness in the United States. Within that Plan, the housing first approach is recommended for most homeless populations, and particularly for families with children. The emphasis of the housing first methodology is on the rapid return of homeless families to permanent housing.

5 HUD CONTINUUM OF CARE MODEL Outreach Intake Assessment Emergency Shelter Transitional Housing Traditional Housing, no services Supportive Housing

6 MODIFICATIONS TO THE CONTINUUM OF CARE Outreach Intake Assessment Traditional Housing, no services Emergency Shelter Transitional Housing Supportive Housing Service-Enriched Permanent Housing Indicates Modifications Permanent Housing with Time-limited, Home-Based Case Management

7 ADDITIONAL HOUSING OPTIONS Service-Enriched Housing Private or nonprofit rental housing, with crisis intervention and services coordination (& often program activities) available to all residents, regardless of special needs. Permanent (scattered site) Apartment with Homebased Case Management Available through outside sources, either time-limited or long-term.

8 THE HOUSING FIRST APPROACH Moves homeless families into permanent rental housing as quickly as possible, with the services traditionally provided in transitional housing programs instead provided after relocation into permanent rental housing. The basic goal of housing first (rapid rehousing) is to break the cycle of homelessness and prevent a recurrence.

9 Regardless of the population served, what characterizes a program as taking a Housing First approach is: 1. there is an immediate and primary focus on helping families and individuals access permanent housing as quickly as possible;

10 2. The housing is not time-limited; 3. Social services are provided primarily following the move into permanent housing, to help the individual or family attain improved social and/or economic well-being; AND

11 4. Housing is not contingent on compliance with services or treatment. [Instead, participants must comply with a standard lease agreement and are provided with the services and supports that may be necessary to help them do so successfully.]

12 TWO PREMISES OF HOUSING FIRST Permanent housing should be the central goal of our work with people experiencing homelessness. By providing permanent housing assistance immediately and up front, we can significantly reduce or eliminate the time people spend in homelessness.

13 While acknowledging and addressing the personal factors that contribute to family homelessness, the housing first methodology also directly addresses one root cause of the problem: the lack of affordable housing.

14 A Flexible Model Housing First program models vary, depending on the target population and the resources that are available. The approach has been adapted for work with homeless families and also for work with chronically homeless individuals.

15 COMPONENTS OF HOUSING FIRST Crisis Intervention and Stabilization Intake and Assessment Assistance Moving into Permanent Housing Home-Based Case Management (can be time-limited & transitional or longer-term, depending on need)

16 Components of the Housing First (Rapid Rehousing) Methodology

17 STEP 1: CRISIS INTERVENTION & SHORT-TERM STABILIZATION This phase usually includes emergency shelter services and short-term transitional housing geared to special needs, i.e. domestic violence, substance abuse treatment, stabilization.

18 INNOVATIONS IN RESPONSE TO CURRENT SHELTER CRISIS In response to the current economic recession and attendant increases in family homelessness, some programs and communities are expanding their shelter capacity by master leasing private rental units in the community at-large as emergency shelter.

19 Some rapid rehousing models place families with current substance abuse more quickly into permanent housing, either that the service provider operates themselves or that the provider leases in the community at-large for a period of time while the adult head-of-household engages in treatment or recovery and progresses towards more stable living patterns and/or sobriety.

20 This practice is not common, however, among family programs. While Housing First programs for chronically homeless individuals may not require sobriety for participants, such a requirement among families is vital in order to ensure child protection.

21 STEP 2: SCREENING, INTAKE & NEEDS ASSESSMENTS The needs assessment should result in a Plan of Action, developed with the participant, and which can include both short and long-term goals and objectives and concrete action steps. Can occur immediately or after crisis intervention or emergency services have been provided.

22 STEP 3: ASSISTANCE MOVING INTO PERMANENT HOUSING Overcoming barriers to accessing affordable housing. Assistance applying for housing subsidies, move-in funds, etc. Tenant/landlord education. Assistance conducting housing search & negotiating with landlords.

23 STEP 4: PROVISION OF HOME-BASED CASE MANAGEMENT Intensive during the first 90 days. Intensifies during crises. Includes connecting people to community resources and services to meet their particular needs. May include longer-term case management for vulnerable and at-risk families and individuals.

24 Housing First: Recognizes that Distinct Functions Serve Different Participant Needs Case Management Accessing Needed Resources & Services Problem Solving Life Skills Parenting Support Money Management Household Management Crisis Intervention Other Supports A SSESSING P LANNING LISTENING E DUCATING A DVOCATING Housing Resources & Relocation FOR PARTICIPANTS Housing Assistance Tenant Education Rental Assistance Programs FOR OWNERS/MANAGERS Available to assist with tenant/landlord issues

25 ADAPTATIONS There is no single model for housing first programs. A rapid rehousing approach can be implemented by one agency or it can be accomplished through the collaboration of different agencies, each providing specific services.

26 A Sample Basic Model Administration Program Director Case Management Supervisor Housing Resources Supervisor Case Manager Case Manager Case Manager Housing Specialist Housing Specialist

27 Adapting Housing First to Transitional Housing Programs Transitional housing programs can incorporate the Housing First approach into their operations by limiting the amount of time families spend in the program and by making permanent housing assistance a central, front end feature of the program.

28 Example of Adaptation in a Transitional Housing Program 1-2 Year Transitional Housing Program Creates new staff positions: Housing Specialist Housing First Case Manager Moves families to permanent housing within days (scattered site rental units owned by agency, socalled transition-in-place, or by private landlords) Provides home-based case management to help family transition to stability

29 A Sample Collaborative Model Agency A (shelter, crisis-center) Short-term case management Agency B (housing agency) Housing relocation Agency C (social service agency) Transitional, home-based case management Agree to collaborate for Comprehensive Service Provision

30 Alternative Collaborative Model Agency A (local school system) Pre-screening and referrals Agency B (social service agency) Crisis intervention, housing placement and transitional, home-based case management Agree to collaborate to identify and serve homeless families and/or those at-risk of homelessness

31 Another Collaborative Model Multi-Disciplinary Team A Team Lead Child Welfare Staff TANF Eligibility Staff Employment Staff Each team is assigned to a separate shelter in the same city or county, or completely different jurisdictions depending on whether the model is local, regional, or statewide Multi-Disciplinary Team B Team Lead Child Welfare Staff TANF Eligibility Staff Employment Staff Services begin in the shelter, focusing on rapid rehousing, and continue once the family is housed, involving a wraparound approach

32 A Sample Community or County Wide Model Lead or Administrative Agency (Nonprofit or Government Entity) Re-granting Funds/Contracts Administration Technical Assistance and Training Establishment of Standards Quality Assurance and Outcome Monitoring Family Collaborative Agency A Agency B Agency C Agree to receive referrals from centralized system and provide housing and case management services

33 Assistance Accessing & Moving Into Permanent Housing

34 THE HOUSING PLAN The objective is to assist the family to obtain decent, affordable permanent housing in which they can stabilize and rebuild their lives. This requires a match between the housing unit and the family s needs. Suitable means decent housing in an environment which will be conducive to the family s stability in permanent housing.

35 THE HOUSING SPECIALIST If available, a Housing Specialist works with the family to identify appropriate, and reasonable, housing search goals. The Housing Specialist also helps the family to identify and address (as much as possible) barriers to securing housing.

36 BARRIERS TO HOUSING Credit History Income Source/Employment History Household Size/Composition No Rental History Lack of Move-In Funds Credit Check Fees Non-English Speaking Criminal History Discrimination Eviction History

37 SYSTEMIC BARRIERS TO HOUSING Vacancy Rates Rents Too High Incomes Too Low Move-In Requirements Discrimination Lack of Move-in Funds Lack of Transportation

38 ACCESSING SECTION 8 Recognizing the high cost of rental housing in most rental markets, it often becomes essential to develop working collaborations with local housing authorities. This often requires new dialogue and innovative planning with housing authority administration. Do not assume that it cannot be done.

39 Sometimes there are special set asides or preferences that can be developed (particularly for families and/or people with special needs).

40 Due to long waiting lists and the fact that generally there are a limited number of Section 8 vouchers available in communities, it has become increasingly essential to identify or develop alternative sources of funding for rent subsidies.

41 Some states and cities are using TANFrelated subsidies. Others are using HOME dollars or local trust fund dollars to provide rental assistance. These funds may serve as bridge or stand-alone subsidies.

42 Other communities are experimenting with short-term and/or shallow rent subsidies, using public and private dollars, often combined with workforce development strategies.

43 ACCESSING PRIVATE RENTAL HOUSING Housing First programs serving families typically assist clients to rent apartments and houses owned by private market landlords.

44 MARKETING THE PROGRAM TO COMMUNITY LANDLORDS Know What You Are Selling Develop Marketing Materials Emphasize Program Benefits Case Management Support Pre-screened Tenants Non-Financial Incentives Financial Incentives

45 HOUSING ASSISTANCE Housing Specialists can provide the following: Landlord/tenant education Advocacy for housing subsidies Transportation and coaching to meet potential property owners Referral to specific owners willing to rent to homeless families

46 Assistance in overcoming bad credit, no credit or eviction histories, etc. Assistance in obtaining move-in funds Follow up to ensure stable relationship with property owner.

47 Leaseholder Considerations Master-lease Co-lease Conventional lease

48 Financial Assistance Government or private housing subsidies Application fees, security deposits, etc. Additional deposits, reserve funds Eviction guarantees Rent-to-prevent eviction

49 TRANSITIONAL Home-Based Case Management

50 PRIMARY FUNCTIONS OF CASE MANAGEMENT Assessment Planning Linking Monitoring Advocacy

51 The primary functions of home-based case management are to provide assistance to clients in life skills development and to link clients to other community organizations that provide services which they need. In Housing First, these services are most often time-limited and transitional (six months to one year).

52 Home-based services are often focused on helping the family overcome the trauma experienced during an episode of homelessness, to enable the family to regain stable living patterns or to develop stable living patterns for the first time.

53 The case manager provides the core level of services and refers specialized services to mainstream programs in the community (i.e., substance abuse services, child care). When specialized services are not available in the community, the Housing First provider may deliver the service themselves or advocate for another way of meeting the client's needs.

54 Some families require more intensive home visits that include demonstrations of housekeeping skills, money-management and budgeting, development of grocery lists, parenting support. Others benefit primarily from assistance in identifying resources in the community and monitoring/support to insure that they do not lose their housing if a crisis occurs.

55 EXAMPLES OF SERVICES BY CASE MANAGERS Household management Money management Problem solving/survival skills Advocacy with welfare, CPS, legal, etc. Family and individual counseling Parenting education and support Relapse prevention Crisis intervention

56 THE FIRST THREE MONTHS Experience has shown that formerly homeless families are most at risk for another episode of homelessness during the first 90 days in permanent housing.

57 Cost-Benefit of Housing First : Case Examples

58 Housing First versus Other Models EXAMPLE: Lutheran Social Services St. Paul, MN Source: Cost Comparisons for a Housing First Program. n.d. Lutheran Social Services: St. Paul, MN.

59 Lutheran Social Services Program Cost Per Day Per Person Cost Per Family (3 Persons) Program Cost Per Year Transitional Housing $19.24 $57.72 $21,067 Homeless Shelter $26.71 $80.13 $29,247 Housing $6.85 $20.55 $7,500 First

60 Housing First versus Foster Care and Other Systems of Care EXAMPLE: St. Paul, MN Source: Cost Comparisons for a Housing First Program. n.d. Lutheran Social Services: St. Paul, MN.

61 St. Paul, MN Program Cost Per Day Per Person Total Program Cost Program Length Foster Care Age 0-11 Max Reimbursement $56.63 $20, Per year Youth Detention/ Treatment Facility $ $80,132 Per year Inpatient Youth Psychiatric Care Max Cost $1,000 $365,000 Per year of service Housing $6.85 $2,500 Per year of service First

62 Cost Savings of Converting Transitional Housing to HF EXAMPLE: HELP USA New York City, NY Source: The Shift to Performance-Based Management in a NYC Homeless Shelter: A Case Study. March Help USA: New York, NY.

63 HELP USA Group Length of Stay (LOS) Per Diem Rate Cost Per Shelter Stay Pre- Housing First 349 Days $60 $20,940 (CY 2005) Housing First 181 Days $60 $10,860 (CY 2006)

64 Financial Benefits & Cost Efficiency Savings due to quicker housing placement: $10,080 Cost reduction: 48% savings 111% increase in families housed: 129 families in CY 2005 versus 272 families in CY 2006 For every 100 families housed, HELP USA saved NYC Dept. of Homeless Services $1,000,000 in shelter costs HELP USA was rewarded with a $364,083 performance bonus for CY 2006 (compared to $11,708 in CY 2005)

65 Cost Savings of Prevention or Shelter Diversion EXAMPLE: Community Care Grant Program Washington, DC Source: 1) Family Homelessness in Our Nation and Community: A Problem with a Solution. June National Alliance to End Homelessness: Washington, DC. 2) Community Care Grant Program. January Community Partnership for the Prevention of Homelessness: Washington, DC.

66 Community Care Grant Program Avg. Length of Stay Cost Per Day Avg. Cost Per Family Outcome Pre- Housing First 186 Days $62 $11,439 Maybe stable, permanent housing Shelter Diversion 0 $0 $7,186 Permanent Housing

67 Financial and System Benefits Shelter diversion saves Washington, DC an estimated $4,500 per family after housing and services Limited shelter space can be utilized more effectively to target those with greatest needs Mainstream system (Family Support Centers and TANF $) not homeless services system or $ re-houses and supports families

68 Addressing Skyrocketing Shelter Costs & Families Population EXAMPLE: State of Massachusetts Source: Housing First: An Unprecedented Opportunity. Fall One Family: Boston, MA.

69 State of Massachusetts: Prior to Housing First Pilots Spending $75-$175 per night on shelter Forced to use motels as overflow shelter $3,000 per family a month on motels $47,000 per household shelter stay, per year, for all shelter types

70 Massachusetts New Approach: Several Permanent Housing Pilots Shelter to Housing Pilot: $6,000 granted per household, per year Paid for rent and all services post-placement Targeted families with work potential 207 families rapidly re-housed 80% remain housed after two years

71 Another Massachusetts Pilot Rental Assistance for Families in Transition (RAFT): Flexible funds for first/last month s rent, security deposits, utility payments, and moving costs To obtain or retain permanent housing $1,365 spent on average per household 436 families assisted over a two-month period

72 Economic Savings 3 Pilots cost an avg. of $2,222 per family for prevention/rapid re-housing 22:1 Prevention initiatives keep 22 families housed for the same cost as ONE shelter room Projections (Going to scale): $18,000,000 to permanently house 3,000 homeless families in system vs. $73,000,000 that State currently spends on shelter Leaves $55,000,000 for other uses, including further innovations, or in savings to taxpayers

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