We Believe in Housing First
Homelessness has long been tackled using a staircase model: move through different stages of
temporary accommodation (including homeless shelters) as you get your life back on track, with a
permanent home as the ultimate reward.
The Compass believes that we all need the secure foundation of a permanent home, and supports
housing first approaches to alleviating the affordable housing and homelessness crises. Housing first
prioritizes moving people experiencing homelessness into independent and permanent housing and
then providing additional supports and services as needed. The Housing First principle recognizes that
the steps to recovery, different for each person (for example, mental health support, getting a job,
addiction management, education), are made more difficult by a lack of housing.
Under housing first principles, “Housing is not contingent upon readiness, or on ‘compliance’ (for
instance, sobriety). Rather, it is a rights-based intervention rooted in the philosophy that all people
deserve housing, and that adequate housing is a precondition for recovery.” (from Housing First in
Canada: Supporting Communities to End Homelessness)
Click here for more Information on The Housing First approach to ending homelessness.