Building on evidence: 13 things to include in Ontario’s municipal homelessness reduction strategies, a resource

October 2013

In 2013, as a result of the province’s ‘Community Homelessness Prevention Initiative,’ municipalities across Ontario are in the process of re-designing their strategies to address homelessness and housing stability. This document summarizes what many researchers at the Centre for Research on Inner City Health see as essential elements for successful homelessness reduction strategies. It is meant for community representatives, policy-makers, program administrators, funders and frontline workers.

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    • Take on racism and discrimination at every level of the housing and homelessness prevention system.
    • Make housing quality a criterion for housing stability.
    • Make respite care available.
    • Match people to the level of care and support they need.
    • Offer housing first.
    • Make sure people have meaningful choice.
    • Work from a harm reduction framework.
    • Take a trauma-informed approach.
    • Pay attention to transitions.
    • Create an accountable evaluation strategy that is able to deal with complexity.
    • Be accountable to people who are facing homelessness or are precariously housed.
    • Offer a high level of mandatory training and skilled supervision for people working in the homelessness reduction system.