Shelter diversion in New London County: It’s working

Shelter diversion is a strategy that prevents homelessness for people seeking shelter by helping them identify immediate alternate housing arrangements and, if necessary, connecting them with services and financial assistance to help them return to permanent housing. Diversion programs can reduce the number of families becoming homeless, the demand for shelter beds, and the size of program wait lists.

Family homeless service providers in New London County, Connecticut, have been working together since 2012 to implement shelter diversion at the front door of their local homeless system. These efforts have significantly reduced the number of families entering shelter in New London County: During FY2015, New London County providers diverted to alternative housing solutions 80% of the families who presented seeking emergency shelter intake. Further, initial evidence suggests that only one in six families diverted in New London County return at a later date to seek shelter in Connecticut.

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CT ends chronic veteran homelessness

On Thursday, August 27, 2015, Gov. Dannel P. Malloy and U.S. Secretary of Veterans Affairs Robert McDonald announced the end of chronic homelessness for Connecticut’s veterans. This remarkable achievement marks a major milestone in the national and state goals to end Veteran homelessness by the end of 2015.

Connecticut is the first state in the country to reach this goal. A national leader in this effort, Connecticut devoted substantial supports to veterans experiencing homelessness through a coordinated and targeted campaign led by the Connecticut Department of Housing, Connecticut Coalition to End Homelessness, the Partnership for Strong Communities, and the CT Heroes’ Project.

“While we pause to celebrate this momentous accomplishment, it is merely a milestone on the path to effectively ending all veteran homelessness in this state by the end of this year,” said Lisa Tepper Bates, CCEH’s executive director. “We’ve made great strides, but our work continues.”

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