Evaluation of Harm Reduction Housing for Chronic Public Inebriates.
Seattle's Downtown Emergency Service Center has begun construction on the first supportive housing project in Seattle dedicated to this population. The project will provide housing and on-site supportive services for 75 individuals without the requirement of abstinence or participation in a treatment program.
Working in collaboration with the University of Washington, this study funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation will evaluate the effectiveness of the housing project's two major objectives: 1) saving the community money through suppression of public crisis system costs, and 2) improving quality of life for housing residents. Study participants will consist of 115 CPIs who have been highly ranked in terms of their number of alcohol-related admissions to hospital emergency departments, jails and sobering centers. Participants will be randomized into an immediate (n = 75) or waitlist (n = 50) housing status, and evaluated over multiple time points in order to assess tax-payer funded service usage, alcohol use, mental health status, and other indices of adjustment.
Potential local and national policy implications to be gained from this research are significant.