Nationally, people of color are overrepresented among people who are homeless. Stakeholders and policymakers are examining system-level factors which may be contributing to, reinforcing, and perpetuating racial inequities.
In partnership with Building Changes and several Continuums of Care, we conducted an analysis to examine potential limits of assessments used by coordinated entry systems to prioritize those with greatest need. Our research concludes:
- On average, Black and Indigenous People of Color (BIPOC) receive statistically significantly lower prioritization scores than their White counterparts.
- White individuals are prioritized for Permanent Supportive Housing intervention at a higher rate than BIPOC individuals.
- Race is a predictor of receiving a high score (i.e., an assessment for Permanent Supportive Housing/Housing First), where being white was a protective factor for single adults.
- VI-SPDAT subscales do not equitably capture vulnerabilities for BIPOC compared to Whites: race is a predictor of 11/16 subscales, and most subscales are tilted towards capturing vulnerabilities that Whites are more likely to endorse.
Our findings point to the pressing need and potential to initiate change and transformation for more equitable assessments and prioritization processes. To learn more about implementing equity strategies in your programs and services, contact Regina Cannon, our Chief Equity and Impact Officer.