North Carolina Coalition to End Homelessness

Predicting Staying In or Leaving Permanent Supportive Housing That Serves Homeless People with Serious Mental Illness

 The Permanent Housing component of the Supportive Housing Program, the Departmentā€™s principal program to meet the needs of homeless people with disabilities, was established to offer homeless people with disabilities, including mental illness, an assurance of permanent housing and appropriate supportive services. The program is designed to provide a structure that counteracts the disruptions of both homelessness and disability. However, while many formerly homeless people remain in permanent supportive housing for many years, substantial numbers leave within months of entry. The questions of why people leave permanent housing and what happens to them constitute the principal focus of this study.
This study examines the experience of some 943 residents of permanent supportive housing in Philadelphia during the period from 2001 to 2005. The capability to merge Homeless Management Information System (HMIS) data and administrative data in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, made possible a viable strategy to track over time a highly elusive population -- formerly homeless people with mental illness who had left permanent supportive housing.
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