Background

Chronic homelessness is expensive; more expensive than housing. The University of California followed 15 chronically homeless people for 18 months and found that each person consumed $200,000 in public services. Managing homelessness costs more than ending it permanently.

Calgary’s Ten Year Plan to End Homelessness states that reaching its targets will require significant initial financial investment in capital projects and new programs from governments, foundations, and the private sector, but these investments will also end many of the costs associated with homelessness. Calgary’s plan estimates that the cumulative cost savings will surpass $3.6 billion.

In addition to significant savings in the public system, supported housing enhances the quality of life for the otherwise homeless, and carries with it retention rates of 80% or greater. In other words, by finding homes for the homeless and then providing the supports they need to maintain their homes, we are ending the cycle of homelessness.

.

.

.