The Impact of Rapid Rehousing on Homelessness: A Randomized Controlled Trial
Santa Clara County’s Office for Supportive Housing (OSH) is introducing a Rapid Re-Housing program (RRH) for single adults in cooperation with HomeFirst, a local non-profit provider. To measure the program’s success and make decisions about scaling the program up, OSH and HomeFirst have been working with the Wilson Sheehan Lab for Economic Opportunities (LEO) and J-PAL to launch a randomized controlled trial (RCT) evaluation of the program. This evaluation will test the hypothesis that providing RRH to homeless single adults will improve housing stability leading to decreases in homeless shelter entry, housing moves, and hospital visits for program participants. This study will also stratify the random assignment of study participants by the score on the county’s risk tool to explore for whom RRH works best. We will randomly select 360 participants for the program and approximately 360 participants for a control group referred to usual care. Results from this RCT will inform policy decisions to scale up and expand the program in the County of Santa Clara and will be disseminated to policy makers and providers in other regions to inform the design or replication of future housing initiatives.