Indianapolis, Indiana

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Best Practice | August 11, 2006

Plan: The Blueprint to End Homelessness
Scope: Citywide

Goal/ Timeframe: To end homelessness in Indianapolis in 10 years.

Development Process

In December 2000, Indianapolis Mayor Bart Peterson publicly endorsed the creation of a long-range strategy for ending homelessness and designated a subcommittee of the City’s Housing Task Force to develop the plan. National experts such as the Corporation for Supportive Housing were contracted to assist in the development of the plan, and work commenced in March 2001.

Approximately 450 people and over 150 organizations participated in the yearlong planning process, which incorporated:

• Surveys of homeless people and local homeless service providers.
• Work teams of Blueprint committee members, service providers and others.
• Focus groups of families and individuals in homeless assistance programs, on the street and/or receiving public aid.
• Meetings with representatives of about 150 organizations and programs, including members of the private, public and nonprofit sectors.

The plan progressed through five widely circulated drafts, culminating in the release of the final plan in April 2002. The plan’s unveiling ceremony received vast support from the community with over 300 in attendance, including Mayor Peterson and an array of citizens from the public, private and nonprofit sectors.

Endorsements

Mayor Peterson has endorsed the Blueprint and all relevant City departments have it as part of their charge to ensure its success.

Level of Detail

Includes detailed strategies, recommendations and action steps as well as preliminary timelines for the first five years of the plan. The initial five-year housing plan includes estimated costs and proposed funding sources. For some goals, the plan recommends the development of action plans with further specificity. Details for carrying out the initiatives and measuring community success are also included.

Strategies of Note

• Developing and managing a homeless management information system to collect and analyze data to improve community-wide planning efforts and coordination of services.
• Neighborhood-based prevention initiative that provides rental subsidies and other services to help people especially vulnerable to becoming homeless.
• Assembling a crisis response team and crisis stabilization programs to help mentally ill and chronically addicted people keep their housing.
• Providing supportive housing to people at risk of homelessness who are leaving the criminal justice system, treatment institutions and the foster care system.
• Appointing entities to coordinate street outreach that emphasizes moving people off the street and links them with housing and an array of support services
• Integrating “housing first” and “housing plus” (housing + intensive services) approaches to shorten homelessness and match the level of services to the intensity of the need.
• Hiring housing specialists to secure access to rental housing managed by private landlords.
• Making 1,700 additional rental units affordable to people with the very lowest incomes over five years – moving toward an ultimate goal of 12,500 affordable units over ten years.
• Providing support services for 2,100 households over five years - to be funded the Community Development Block Grant, Medicaid and Medicaid Waiver programs, through Housing Opportunities for Persons With AIDS, Temporary Assistance to Needy Families and other sources.
• Increasing opportunities for people to find and maintain employment to boost their income.

Implementation

The plan designates a lead entity – the Coalition for Homelessness Intervention and Prevention (CHIP) – that will focus its energies on mobilizing the community’s resources to ensure the plan’s successful implementation.

For More Information, Contact

Dan Shepley
Executive Director
Coalition for Homelessness Intervention & Prevention
960 East Washington Street, Suite 200B
Indianapolis, IN 46202
(317) 630-0853
Fax: (317) 630-0856
Email: chip@chipindy.org
Website: http://www.chipindy.org