Learn More About Housing First

Posted on May 1, 2013

What is the Housing First Model?

The Housing First Model is a harm reduction method for asserting chronic homelessness. It began to grow in the 1990’s and became first popular in New York and Portland. The model suggests that a homeless person may first be found housing without judgement or readiness for housing which goes against the common practice of treatment before access to housing. Once the person has been housed, they will be supported in recovery for substance abuse as well as mental and/or physical illness, and encouraged to become active in their society through employment and education for example.

Why use the Housing First Model?

The Housing First Model is effective in that it acts as a less expensive alternative to caring for the homeless. The cost of providing a home for a year has been proven to be much less than the year’s cost of street homelessness. The difference in cost exists because the supported living facility often decreases the effects of crime, as well as the necessity for medical services and policing. Also, the comfort of a home and safe environment can increases the chances of recovery substance abuse as well as mental and/or physical illness.

Where is the Housing First Model being implemented in Canada?

British Columbia
http://www.housingmattersbc.ca/strategy1.html
– Victoria = http://victoriahomelessness.ca/get-informed/streets-to-homes/

Alberta
http://www.housing.alberta.ca/documents/Housing_First_brochure.pdf

Ontario
– Ottawa = http://www.therecord.com/opinion/columns/article/924392–ottawa-on-the-right-track-with-housing-first-strategy

Learn More
Take a look at the website “The Homeless Hub” to further your knowledge on the Housing First Model.

http://www.homelesshub.ca/topics/housing-first-209.aspx

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