massachusetts’ efforts to end family homelessness

Download Massachusetts’ Efforts to End Family Homelessness

Post on 01-Jan-2016




0 download

Embed Size (px)


Commonwealth of Massachusetts Department of Transitional Assistance. Massachusetts’ Efforts to End Family Homelessness. John A. Wagner, Commissioner MA Department of Transitional Assistance (Welfare) National Alliance to End Homelessness Annual Conference Washington DC July 17, 2006. - PowerPoint PPT Presentation


  • Massachusetts Efforts to End Family Homelessness

    John A. Wagner, CommissionerMA Department of Transitional Assistance (Welfare)National Alliance to End Homelessness Annual ConferenceWashington DCJuly 17, 2006

  • BackgroundMA Department of Transitional Assistance = Food Stamps, TANF, cash assistance, homeless shelters$35M for individuals$74M for families

    Broken sheltering system for serving homeless familiesHotels at front-door (lack of capacity)Little up-front case management or assessmentOver-reliance on deep-end, high-cost emergency shelterLack of good data (MIS) systemLack of attachment to other systems (mainstream benefits)

  • StrategiesWhat We Did (2002-04)Stabilized sheltering systemImplemented ~5-6 pilots focused on reforming the sheltering systemImproved tracking (e.g., BEACON then HMIS)Govs Executive Commission (2/03) and MICHH providing a broad-based frameworkTackled an Identifiable Issue (Tipping Point)Families in hotels, peaked Aug. 2003, eliminated Aug. 2004Legislative ResponseFY05 legislative changes, increasing eligibility for shelter

  • What Were Doing (2005-present)Short-Term Focus on Expanding Capacity>250 units 6/04 to 5/062/05 implemented Toolbox, $4-6K for prevention and/or placement. Prevention ended 12/05; 1/06 total capped at $2K

    Long-Term Focus on Reforming SystemIssued RFI for inputAssembled advisory group (lead advocate, national researcher, United Way, H&HS staff) guiding agency planningFurther research and analysisSystem inventory, cost analysesCaseload demographics, LOS data, entry/exit dataStakeholder meetings (providers, regional housing authorities, CBOs, CoCs

  • What Were Doing (2005-present) cont.Guiding Principles:Community-based to leverage community strengths and resources;Prevention-focused, with rapid attachment to housing;Governed by a tripartite responsibility (between the family, state, community provider, all committed to maximizing a familys economic opportunity and self-sufficiency);Seamless and coordinated, to facilitate access, monitoring, and improved management;Research-driven, performance-based and focused on results