Some people with substance dependence and behavioral or mental health needs cycle between homelessness and incarceration for months or years due to a national failure to invest adequately in critical services and community-identified supports.
THE PROBLEM: Overreliance on the justice system, which comes from a lack of access to fair, humane, and equitable systems that provide the resources and supportive services that people need to thrive.
THE SOLUTION: We must move away from institutionalization, increasing access to and investing in delivering secure, stable, healthy housing and trauma-informed services. CSH collaborates with public systems, service providers, policymakers, people with lived experience, landlords, and broad sector partners to break the cycle. We advance innovative programs and models, systems change, and policy advocacy so that individuals can thrive.
Housing Justice Requires Racial Equity
The data show that Black, Indigenous and other People of Color (BIPOC) are disproportionally overrepresented in the justice system. From policing to pretrial, jail and prison discharge planning process and reentry, systemic racism exists at every stage. CSH’s Racial Disparities and Disproportionality Index (RDDI) looks at a racial/and or ethnic group’s representation in institutional systems to examine the systematic differences between groups and geographies (disparities).
CSH's Justice Initiatives, Case Studies, and Housing Interventions
CSH has worked alongside communities for decades as they have constructed housing models to expand access to housing for people impacted by the justice system.
Below are some examples of CSH's justice initiatives, case studies, and housing interventions that we have worked on over the years.
Returning Home & Community Transition Program
Returning Home Ohio (RHO) is a collaboration with the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction and Community Transition Program (CTP), CSH, and Ohio Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services. The programs connect people exiting jail or prison who have a mental illness or substance use disorder with housing and services. The results have been outstanding. Year after year, less than 9% of people served by RHO or CTP exit the programs to incarceration (prison or jail). Contact us to explore launching Returning Home or Community Transition in your state.
Denver Supportive Housing Social Impact Bond Initiative
Urban Institute published results of a rigorous five-year program in Denver, CO, that deployed the Social Impact Bond (SIB) model. At the end of the study, 77% of the more than 700 individuals in the intervention group remained stably housed and had notably reduced interactions with the justice system.
CSH's signature initiative, Frequent Users Systems Engagement (FUSE), helps communities break the cycle of homelessness and crisis among individuals with complex medical and behavioral health challenges who are the highest users of emergency rooms, jails, shelters, clinics and other costly crisis services.
Fortune Castle Gardens
Fortune Castle Gardens combines permanent supportive and affordable housing, serving both justice-impacted individuals and community members with low incomes.
The Justice Involved Supportive Housing (JISH) provides service and operating funding for housing and service providers who serve individuals with histories of homelessness, and behavioral health needs cycling through the justice system.
This pilot program serves Philadelphians with a mental illness who are cycling between the justice system and homelessness, by providing affordable, supportive housing and service interventions such as mental health case management and counseling.
CSH Speak Up! Program
CSH's Speak Up! advocacy programs have helped raise the voice and wisdom of people with lived experiences of homelessness, justice involvement, and mental illness. HUD must consult and include people with lived experience as part of this six-month review process.
Resources and Toolkits
Developments in the Field
New York, NY, 10006