Housing First

This section is a starting point for those wanting to learn more about ‘Housing First’. We address definitions, statistics, common myths and questions.

‘Housing First’ is an approach to ending homelessness that centers on moving people experiencing homelessness into independent and permanent housing as a first step.  It provides people with immediate access to permanent housing with no housing ‘readiness’ or compliance requirements, is recovery-oriented and centres on consumer choice, self-determination and community integration.

It is a rights-based intervention rooted in the philosophy that all people deserve housing, and that adequate housing is a precondition for recovery. The approach affirms that stable housing is a primary need, and that issues, such as addictions or mental health, can be better addressed once this need is fulfilled.

‘Housing First’ can be utilized and understood in 3 different ways:

as a foundational philosophy embedded within a systems approach;

as a specific program provided by an agency or government body;

 as a team designed to meet the needs of specific target populations.