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The SSRC Library allows visitors to access materials related to self-sufficiency programs, practice and research. Visitors can view common search terms, conduct a keyword search or create a custom search using any combination of the filters at the left side of this page. To conduct a keyword search, type a term or combination of terms into the search box below, select whether you want to search the exact phrase or the words in any order, and click on the blue button to the right of the search box to view relevant results.

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  • Individual Author: Montgomery, Ann Elizabeth; Cusack, Meagan
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 2017

    The HUD-VA Supportive Housing (HUD-VASH) program combines HUD’s housing choice vouchers, administered by public housing authorities (PHAs), with VA case management to offer homeless Veterans permanent supportive housing. The HUD-VASH Exit study, commissioned by HUD and VA, investigated HUD-VASH at four sites: Houston, TX; Los Angeles and Palo Alto, CA; and Philadelphia, PA. The study examined program implementation, the movement of Veterans from homelessness to being housed, and the nature of Veterans’ exits from HUD-VASH. To do this, the research team analyzed administrative data covering 2008 to 2014 at the four sites, and surveyed Veterans and conducted site visits (including interviews with staff and Veterans) between 2011 and 2014. As such the study captures HUD-VASH during a time of transformation. In 2008, HUD-VASH served fewer than 2,000 Veterans. By 2014, HUD-VASH was a major program that housed 53,000 Veterans and had served more than 80,000 Veterans. The study defined three HUD-VASH Veteran groups: (1) stayers (Veterans in the program for at least 600 days), (2) leased...

    The HUD-VA Supportive Housing (HUD-VASH) program combines HUD’s housing choice vouchers, administered by public housing authorities (PHAs), with VA case management to offer homeless Veterans permanent supportive housing. The HUD-VASH Exit study, commissioned by HUD and VA, investigated HUD-VASH at four sites: Houston, TX; Los Angeles and Palo Alto, CA; and Philadelphia, PA. The study examined program implementation, the movement of Veterans from homelessness to being housed, and the nature of Veterans’ exits from HUD-VASH. To do this, the research team analyzed administrative data covering 2008 to 2014 at the four sites, and surveyed Veterans and conducted site visits (including interviews with staff and Veterans) between 2011 and 2014. As such the study captures HUD-VASH during a time of transformation. In 2008, HUD-VASH served fewer than 2,000 Veterans. By 2014, HUD-VASH was a major program that housed 53,000 Veterans and had served more than 80,000 Veterans. The study defined three HUD-VASH Veteran groups: (1) stayers (Veterans in the program for at least 600 days), (2) leased-up exiters (Veterans who exited after leasing up), and (3) nonleased exiters (Veterans who exited before accessing housing). “Exit” was defined as leaving VA case management as recorded in VA administrative data by case managers. The study finds that about half of the leased-up exiters left HUD-VASH for positive reasons such as accomplishing their goals or increased income, but that only a quarter of nonleased exiters had positive reasons for exit. Common negative reasons for exit included housing difficulties, loss of contact with the program, illness, incarceration, and non-compliance with program rules. Specific recommendations to ensure continued program effectiveness converge around (1) improving coordination of HUD and VA processes in HUD-VASH sites; (2) targeting financial resources for specific situations such as move-in, threat of eviction, and transitioning out of HUD-VASH; and (3) ensuring continuity of care for Veterans in the program. (Author abstract)

  • Individual Author: Gubits, Daniel; Shinn, Marybeth; Wood, Michelle; Bell, Stephen; Dastrup, Samuel; Solari, Claudia D.; Brown, Scott R.; McInnis, Debi; McCall, Tom; Kattel, Utsav
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 2016

    The Family Options Study: Three-year Impacts of Housing and Services Interventions for Homeless Families documents the outcomes of the 2,282 formerly homeless study families approximately 37 months after having been randomly assigned to one of four housing and/or services interventions. The findings at 37-months in large part mirror the findings documented at 20 months, with the long-terms outcomes again demonstrating the power of a voucher to convey significantly improved housing outcomes to formerly homeless families, when compared with the housing outcomes of families offered other interventions. Families offered a permanent subsidy experienced less than half as many episodes of subsequent homelessness, and vast improvements across a broad set of measures related to residential stability. Many of the non-housing outcomes of interest that were strongly influenced by the offer of a voucher in the short-term, such as reductions in psychological distress and intimate partner violence, are still detected, but some positive impacts found at the 20-month followup are not detected at...

    The Family Options Study: Three-year Impacts of Housing and Services Interventions for Homeless Families documents the outcomes of the 2,282 formerly homeless study families approximately 37 months after having been randomly assigned to one of four housing and/or services interventions. The findings at 37-months in large part mirror the findings documented at 20 months, with the long-terms outcomes again demonstrating the power of a voucher to convey significantly improved housing outcomes to formerly homeless families, when compared with the housing outcomes of families offered other interventions. Families offered a permanent subsidy experienced less than half as many episodes of subsequent homelessness, and vast improvements across a broad set of measures related to residential stability. Many of the non-housing outcomes of interest that were strongly influenced by the offer of a voucher in the short-term, such as reductions in psychological distress and intimate partner violence, are still detected, but some positive impacts found at the 20-month followup are not detected at the longer, 37-month followup. For example, 20 months after random assignment, assignment to SUB reduced the proportion of families with child separations in the 6 months before the survey--this effect was not detected in the 6 months before the 37-month survey. Also in this longer window of observation, some positive impacts in the child well-being domain have emerged. Families offered a voucher continue to be significantly more food secure and experience significantly less economic stress than families offered the other interventions. On measures of employment and earnings, the modest negative impacts of vouchers relative to usual care have fallen, although some remain statistically significant. (Author abstract)

  • Individual Author: National Registry of Evidence-based Programs and Practices (NREPP)
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 2014

    Housing First, a program developed by Pathways to Housing, Inc., is designed to end homelessness and support recovery for individuals who are homeless and have severe psychiatric disabilities and co-occurring substance use disorders. Pathways' Housing First model is based on the belief that housing is a basic right and on a theoretical foundation that emphasizes consumer choice, psychiatric rehabilitation, and harm reduction. The program addresses homeless individuals' needs from a consumer perspective, encouraging them to define their own needs and goals, and provides immediate housing (in the form of apartments located in scattered sites) without any prerequisites for psychiatric treatment or sobriety. For consumers with high needs, treatment and support services are typically provided through an Assertive Community Treatment (ACT) team consisting of social workers, nurses, psychiatrists, vocational and substance abuse counselors, peer counselors, and other professionals. These services may include psychiatric and substance use treatment, supported employment, illness...

    Housing First, a program developed by Pathways to Housing, Inc., is designed to end homelessness and support recovery for individuals who are homeless and have severe psychiatric disabilities and co-occurring substance use disorders. Pathways' Housing First model is based on the belief that housing is a basic right and on a theoretical foundation that emphasizes consumer choice, psychiatric rehabilitation, and harm reduction. The program addresses homeless individuals' needs from a consumer perspective, encouraging them to define their own needs and goals, and provides immediate housing (in the form of apartments located in scattered sites) without any prerequisites for psychiatric treatment or sobriety. For consumers with high needs, treatment and support services are typically provided through an Assertive Community Treatment (ACT) team consisting of social workers, nurses, psychiatrists, vocational and substance abuse counselors, peer counselors, and other professionals. These services may include psychiatric and substance use treatment, supported employment, illness management, and recovery services. Consumers who have more moderate needs, are further along in recovery, or participate in smaller programs may receive support through an intensive case management approach, obtaining services both directly from their own program and through referrals to other agencies. Consistent with the principles of consumer choice, Housing First uses the harm reduction approach in its clinical services to address both substance abuse and psychiatric issues. The treatment team recognizes that consumers can be at different stages of recovery and that interventions should be tailored to each consumer's stage. Consumers' tenancy is not dependent on their adherence to clinical treatment, although they must meet the obligations of a standard lease. The team works with consumers through housing loss, hospitalization, or incarceration and helps consumers obtain housing after these episodes. While consumers can refuse formal clinical services, the program requires them to meet with a team member at least four to six times per month to ensure their safety and well-being. (Author introduction)

  • Individual Author: Meschede, Tatjana
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 2004

    In the winter of 1998/99, after the deaths of 16 homeless people in the streets of Boston attracted wide attention by the media, the Commissioner of the Massachusetts Department of Public Health (MDPH), Dr. Howard Koh, convened a group of stakeholders serving the homeless street population. The goal of this MDPH Homeless Taskforce was to reduce the number of homeless people dying on the streets as well as to improve service delivery to those homeless individuals most at risk of dying. A wide range of individuals serving or encountering the homeless street population, including homeless outreach teams, law enforcement personnel, and homeless advocates, were invited to participate in the task force.

    Contrary to common beliefs that the homeless do not want to accept services and help (Boston Globe, 2/13/2002), an investigation into the lives of those who died in the streets of Boston in the winter of 1998/99 by members of the MDPH homeless taskforce indicated that service providers knew most of them. This fact clearly demonstrates that homeless people use services when they...

    In the winter of 1998/99, after the deaths of 16 homeless people in the streets of Boston attracted wide attention by the media, the Commissioner of the Massachusetts Department of Public Health (MDPH), Dr. Howard Koh, convened a group of stakeholders serving the homeless street population. The goal of this MDPH Homeless Taskforce was to reduce the number of homeless people dying on the streets as well as to improve service delivery to those homeless individuals most at risk of dying. A wide range of individuals serving or encountering the homeless street population, including homeless outreach teams, law enforcement personnel, and homeless advocates, were invited to participate in the task force.

    Contrary to common beliefs that the homeless do not want to accept services and help (Boston Globe, 2/13/2002), an investigation into the lives of those who died in the streets of Boston in the winter of 1998/99 by members of the MDPH homeless taskforce indicated that service providers knew most of them. This fact clearly demonstrates that homeless people use services when they are available, and that street deaths can be attributed, at least to some extent, to the failure of the homeless service delivery system. It is therefore important to evaluate the homeless service system as it pertains to the homeless street population. Due to a lack of consistent and coordinated data collection among service agencies, little is known about the overall service utilization of Boston’s homeless street population, and this study begins to fill this gap.

    Starting in January 2000, the Boston Health Care for the Homeless Program (BHCHP) implemented an intensive medical care plan for a group of street dwellers identified at high risk of death. Many of these “chronically” homeless individuals on the streets do not move along the homeless continuum of care (CoC) as planned, but remain on the streets for long periods of time. This study documents their health and substance abuse service utilization pattern, demonstrates their movement through different service agencies and documents where these services fail. (author abstract) 

  • Individual Author: Tsemberis, Sam; Gulcur, Leyla; Nakae, Maria
    Reference Type: Journal Article
    Year: 2004

    Objectives. We examined the longitudinal effects of a Housing First program for homeless, mentally ill individuals’ on those individuals’ consumer choice, housing stability, substance use, treatment utilization, and psychiatric symptoms.  Methods. Two hundred twenty-five participants were randomly assigned to receive housing contingent on treatment and sobriety (control) or to receive immediate housing without treatment prerequisites (experimental). Interviews were conducted every 6 months for 24 months. Results. The experimental group obtained housing earlier, remained stably housed, and reported higher perceived choice. Utilization of substance abuse treatment was significantly higher for the control group, but no differences were found in substance use or psychiatric symptoms. Conclusions. Participants in the Housing First program were able to obtain and maintain independent housing without compromising psychiatric or substance abuse symptoms. (Author abstract)

    Objectives. We examined the longitudinal effects of a Housing First program for homeless, mentally ill individuals’ on those individuals’ consumer choice, housing stability, substance use, treatment utilization, and psychiatric symptoms.  Methods. Two hundred twenty-five participants were randomly assigned to receive housing contingent on treatment and sobriety (control) or to receive immediate housing without treatment prerequisites (experimental). Interviews were conducted every 6 months for 24 months. Results. The experimental group obtained housing earlier, remained stably housed, and reported higher perceived choice. Utilization of substance abuse treatment was significantly higher for the control group, but no differences were found in substance use or psychiatric symptoms. Conclusions. Participants in the Housing First program were able to obtain and maintain independent housing without compromising psychiatric or substance abuse symptoms. (Author abstract)

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