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Best Practices in Ending Homelessness

A series of professional panels sponsored and hosted by the NJ Department of Human Services

 

 1.  November 15, 2016

  

Everyone deserves a permanent home. Research shows that access to safe and permanent housing has a definitively positive impact on health and well-being. The stability of a permanent residence can result in better educational outcomes for children and improved employment outcomes for adults.

Homelessness prevention is a priority for this Administration. In 2012, Governor Chris Christie created a Task Force on Homelessness by Executive Order. Throughout his tenure, he has tasked several state departments with improving or expanding various initiatives to advance housing options for people who are homeless or at risk.

This panel discussion was an opportunity to hear four national and renown experts talk about the best practices involved in addressing homelessness.  Their collective experience and expertise can provide insight and direction as New Jersey continues its efforts in this regard.

Presentations included:

     Sharon McDonald

     Marcella Maguire

 

 2. February 22, 2017

This panel moved us from examining efforts at the national level to applying them at the local level.  These panelists truly are applying best practice in order to prevent and end homelessness in New Jersey.  Preventing and ending homelessness has been and continues to be a priority for this administration.  The 2016 Point in Time Homeless Count report showed that the number of people and households experiencing homelessness decreased over the previous year, 12.4% and 11.9% respectively. Additionally, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development’s November 2016 report to Congress noted that NJ is one of five states with the largest reduction in homeless individuals between 2007 and 2016 - a decrease of 38.3%.  These successes could not have been realized without the continued and proactive partnerships with federal, state and local governments and non-governmental organizations. In January, nearly 40 Department of Human Services staff members participated in the 2017 Point in Time Homeless Count, with efforts spanning 16 sites across 11 counties, assisting organizations on the ground in this important effort.  We will continue advancing new and beneficial initiatives with the help of dedicated individuals and organizations all over the state.

Presentations included:

     Watch in full

     Bergen County

     Hudson County

     Middlesex County

     DCA

 3. March 28, 2017

 

This third edition focused on state agencies applying national level best practices.  The three state agencies represented serve unique populations and advance the administration’s priority of supporting citizens who find themselves housing insecure and in need of additional supports.  While much of the work has been done within each individual department, through the work of the Governor’s Council on Homelessness, issues and concerns across broad population groups were examined.  The success of supportive housing programs, programs for people with disabilities, programs for aging-out youth and programs for Veterans are represented in recently available data sets.  The 2016 Point in Time Homeless Count report showed that the number of people and households experiencing homelessness decreased over the previous year, 12.4% and 11.9% respectively.  This level of success puts New Jersey among the most improved states in the country, ranking the state among the top five for the largest reduction in homeless individuals between 2007 and 2016 - a decrease of 38.3% - according to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development’s November 2016 report.  The Department of Human Services continues to work with its sister departments and local government entities to address at the needs of individuals and families in order to continue this positive trajectory.

Presentations Included:

Watch in full

Director of Medicaid

Director of Family Development

Director of Mental Health and Addiction Services

Department of Military and Veterans Affairs

Department of Children and Families

 
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