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A Bridge to Where?

Short-Term Housing Assistance for Homeless Families in Massachusetts and the Ongoing Need for Affordable Housing and Emergency Shelter

Over the past two years, thousands of homeless families with children in Massachusetts have been placed in private market housing made affordable only by short-term housing subsidies. These subsidies are now expiring, leaving these children and their families at imminent risk of a return to homelessness.

Urgent action is needed to address this new aspect of the Commonwealth’s family homelessness crisis.

In addition, policy makers should hesitate before dedicating more resources to short-term housing assistance – at least until more independent evaluation is done, the negative unintended consequences discussed in this paper are adequately addressed, and additional steps are taken to ensure that short-term housing assistance becomes a “bridge to permanent housing.”.....

Photo of car driving over bridgeIn November 2010, Massachusetts Law Reform Institute published a new report that explains the impact of short term policies on children and their families. Download the PDF file A Bridge to Where? to understand the real connection between policy and homelessness in Massachusetts.