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1.3 Rapid Re-Housing for Survivors of Domestic Violence


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1.3 Rapid Re-Housing for Survivors of Domestic Violence

Speaker: Linda Olsen

Rapid re-housing is being adapted by domestic violence providers to respond to the housing needs of the women and families they serve. This workshop will examine how rapid re-housing and homelessness prevention strategies are being used to serve survivors of domestic violence. Presenters will share their service models and lead a discussion on how to assist survivors in finding and maintaining safe, permanent housing.

Published in: Business, Real Estate
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1.3 Rapid Re-Housing for Survivors of Domestic Violence

  1. 1. HOUSING FIRST FOR DV SURVIVORS“It’s not just housing; it’s a sense of identity.” 1
  2. 2. WHAT IS IT? Domestic Violence Housing First seeks to eliminate housing as a reason for survivors to stay in an abusive relationship.It does this through advocacy and a flexible approach to services and financial assistance.This gives survivors the freedom to choose how best to rebuild their lives. 2
  3. 3. WHOSE DOING THIS?13 domestic violence programs in WashingtonState: four in urban areas and nine in ruralareasTechnical assistance is provided by theWashington State Coalition Against DomesticViolenceProject funding is from the Bill & Melinda GatesFoundation and the Empire Health Foundation 3
  4. 4. HOW DID IT START?In 2009, four agencies were funded to tryan experimental, completely flexibleapproach to housing for DV survivors.Due to promising results, an additionalnine programs were funded in 2011.New programs are primarily culturallyspecific: tribal, farmworkers, immigrants,and small rural communities 4
  5. 5. HOUSING FIRST PRINCIPLESHousing is a right.People who are homeless or on the verge ofhomelessness should be returned to orstabilized in permanent housing as quickly aspossibleIssues that may have contributed to ahousehold’s homelessness (including domesticviolence) can best be addressed once they arehoused. 5
  6. 6. DV HOUSING FIRSTSafety is central to advocacySurvivor-Driven/Centered—MobileAdvocacy, Voluntary ServicesSensitive to impacts of abuser sabotageand trauma history (including historicaltrauma of community) 6
  7. 7. WHAT HAS EVOLVED?Survivor-centered advocacy is the heart andsoulOnly eligibility is presence of domestic violence;program participation may be limited byprogram and community resource capacityFlexible, temporary financial assistanceAssistance with housing searchStrong partnerships with PHAs, privatelandlords, housing/homeless organizations 7
  8. 8. PROMISING PRACTICESPrevention: 40% of Cohort 1 participants hadpermanent housing at program entry in 2009-10and were able to retainRapid ReHousing: 53% of Cohort 1 participantsaccessed new permanent housing in the sametime frame56% of these participants needed only “lighttouch” services (simple, discrete needs that aremet quickly) 8
  9. 9. WHERE ARE THEY NOW?198 Households served in 2 yearsEarly evaluation was qualitative, so two ofthe four agencies were not prepared totrack longer term client outcomes (171 HH)97% (86 HH) retained housing at 6 months85% (62 HH) retained housing at 12 monthsOf those still in the program and tracked at18 months, 100% (6 HH) are still in housing 9
  10. 10. WHAT’S HAPPENING NOW?116 new program participants during Oct.-Dec. 2011 Quarter: 17 from Cohort 1 & 99from Cohort 241% had permanent housing on programentry76% in permanent housing (point of time)42% were higher needs programparticipants 10
  11. 11. CHALLENGESEmployment stability; reliable incomeShortage of subsidized and affordable housingSubstandard HousingPrivate landlord screening criteria: criminalhistory, evictions, bad or no credit, past debtDiscriminationImmigration Status 11
  12. 12. SUCCESSESRestored dignityAbility to focus on other needs, such asemployment, financial skills,transportation, legal issues, and “healing”New relationships with landlords, housingauthorities, and permanent supportivehousing providers 12
  13. 13. Ending Homelessness For Families and Youth, 2/9-10/2012 Linda Olsen, M.A., M.S.W. Housing Program Coordinator Washington State Coalition Against Domestic Violence 206-389-2515, x 205 (what we do/our projects tab) 13