Critical Time Intervention: from homelessness to hotels and beyond
Blog posted by: Alex Smith, 22 June 2020.
With around 15,000 people in emergency Covid accommodation across England, the question now is what happens beyond the pandemic and how are we able to achieve #EveryoneInForGood? Learning from the US suggests that Critical Time Intervention (CTI) is one part of the answer.
Homeless Link’s #EveryoneInForGood campaign calls for urgent national and local action so that nobody is forced to sleep rough after lockdown. There are three key principles:
- Nobody returns or is new to the streets
- Everybody receives support to keep their accommodation
- No return to business as usual
It is clear that a significant number of people currently accommodated in hotels or similar emergency housing settings are at risk of returning to the streets unless there is a plan to support a transition to appropriate accommodation, and the word ‘appropriate’ is crucial here. People who experience homelessness and multiple disadvantage are not a homogenous group and it is essential that we consider this when looking at routes out of hotels and into more stable housing options.
For some people, a Housing First approach may be appropriate, but others will be moving to a diverse range of housing and/or support options. It is crucial that this transition is managed well to ensure that, following the initial move, nobody later returns to the streets.
Critical Time Intervention (CTI) is an evidenced-based model that helps vulnerable people during times of transition to strengthen their network of support in the community. CTI may be appropriate for a person who has previously been homeless, is now able to move into more stable accommodation, and requires a community integration approach.
For someone currently staying in a hotel, CTI support could help during the transition through a structured three-phase nine-month intervention:
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