DEDICATE FUNDING TO SUPPORT HOUSING FIRST | Overview
Key Partners • City of Greensboro - NDD • Guilford County Continuum of Care
Greensboro should assess all existing supportive housing programs to ensure that they are aligned with the Housing First approach to homelessness assistance. Housing First prioritizes providing shelter for all individuals experiencing homelessness.
The Housing First approach to homelessness assistance prioritizes providing permanent housing to those experiencing homelessness. The Housing First model prioritizes getting individuals access to housing as quickly as possible, based on an understanding that permanent, safe housing is a necessary first step from which individuals can then be connected to services to improve quality of life and address issues that may have led to homelessness, such as behavioral health problems or addictions. While the Housing First approach offers supportive services to tenants, it does not mandate them as a requirement to remain housed. The City should assess all existing supportive housing programs to ensure they are in line with the Housing First approach. Greensboro has an existing suite of homelessness prevention programs, including emergency shelter as temporary accommodation for those in need, rapid re-housing to rapidly exit those without intensive case management needs from homelessness, and permanent supportive housing for individuals and families with special needs. To prioritize providing shelter for individuals experiencing homelessness, the City should assess all of these existing programs to ensure they prioritize housing over service provision. The City should then dedicate additional funding to reassessed Housing First programs. Ultimately, households that experience homelessness place high costs on society, through things like emergency services and use of hospitals and jails. Funneling public investment into providing safe, permanent housing can actually be a more cost-effective method of addressing homelessness. Additional funding dedicated to Housing First-aligned programs should end up as an overall cost-savings measure for the community.
1. Evaluate the current Continuum of Care structure in terms of providing data, systems, and outcomes in meeting the needs of the City’s homeless population, and recommend areas for improvement
2. Evaluate the allocation of existing resources
3. Recommend the best structure and funding strategy for Housing First based on evaluation of current structures Anticipated Cost to Implement: ~$960,000 To fund programs