In 2002, the United States embraced the Housing First approach, which led to the widespread adoption of this approach in cities across the nation. This resulted in programmatic variations of Housing First and calls for clarity about the Housing First model. This study uses a comparative case study approach to explore the differences across Housing First programs in five selected cities: Dallas, Austin, Houston, Los Angeles, and Salt Lake City. It focuses on one aspect of programmatic variation: housing type. Data collection consisted of in-depth interviews with 53 participants, documentation review, and site visits. Findings show differences in the type of housing used and explore the reasons why Housing First programs select such housing configurations. The results highlight how programmatic variation does not necessarily mean the Housing First model lacks clarity. Rather, homeless service providers adapt the model to address local challenges and needs, resulting in the variation seen across programs and cities. The findings elucidate the debate about variation in the Housing First model and the call for fidelity.
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License
which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited