Report on Effects of Frequent Users Service Enhancement (FUSE) on Homelessness

Aidala, Angela A.; McAllister, William; Yomogida, Maiko; Shubert, Virginia

The Corporation for Supportive Housing’s FUSE program provides housing and services to homeless people with a history of frequently using NYC shelters and of frequently being jailed. In so doing, it seeks to improve the physical and mental health of these people, as well as other aspects of their lives, and to reduce the their use of shelters, jails, and crisis care operations (e.g., ambulance rides, emergency room visits, and the like). This evaluation uses a prospective, quasi-experimental design as well as propensity score matching to measure the effects of the program over two years. It interviews and collects data at six month intervals on 72 program participants and a similarly sized comparison group. It finds strong effects on permanent housing and shelter use, milder but positive effects on incarceration and jails, and varyingly sized but generally positive effects on individual’s health as well as on crisis care operations. In addition, it finds, among other cost effects, that an almost $16,000 reduction per person in avoidable public costs offsets over 60% of the total public cost for the FUSE program.

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