Return to the lead support bureau
Return to glossary

Housing First

Housing First is an evidence-based approach to fostering stabilization by connecting people to housing as quickly as possible. It recognizes that a safe and consistent place to live is an essential precondition for other kinds of positive behavior change. Consistent with harm reduction principles, Housing First emerged as an alternative to approaches that required people to “achieve” certain behaviors in order to “earn” their eligibility for housing or that imposed preconditions such as sobriety, treatment or service participation. Housing First recognizes that safety, security and a decent living environment is the first step toward reducing ongoing trauma, and that trauma recovery is almost impossible while trauma is ongoing.