Action Points: Four Steps to Expand Access to Housing for People in the Justice System with Behavioral Health Needs
As discussed in this brief from The Council of State Governments Justice Center, state and local leaders are beginning to understand that providing affordable, permanent housing is fundamental to reducing justice involvement, particularly for people with behavioral health needs. However, affordable housing is scarce nationwide, and people who have been involved in the justice system face a number of barriers to accessing available housing, including stigma and prohibitions based on criminal records.
According to the Justice Center, these challenges disproportionately impact Black and Latinx people, who already face higher rates of incarceration and homelessness than the population as a whole.
In light of these challenges, this brief presents four steps state leaders should take to increase housing opportunities and improve justice and health outcomes for this population.