Next Step Jobs—Promoting employment for homeless people: A cost-effectiveness analysis of the Next Step Jobs Initiative
David A. Long
This report—“Promoting Employment for Homeless People” —by Abt Associates demonstrates, integrating employment services into supportive housing not only benefits tenants, but is a cost effective investment that strengthens communities. In 1996, CSH, the government, philanthropy, and the supportive housing industry launched a national employment demonstration program. The Next Step: Jobs program involved 3,500 tenants living in 42 supportive housing buildings operated by 21 nonprofit agencies in New York, Chicago, and the San Francisco Bay area. This report shows that supportive housing tenants increase their earnings and decrease their reliance on public entitlements when employment services are provided. After following the employment activities of tenants for four years, the researchers conclude that it is cost effective to finance employment services in supportive housing, verifying what some dedicated supportive housing providers have long believed to be true.