Working Together to End Homelessness for Domestic and Sexual Violence Survivors and Their Families

Survivors of violence face real barriers when trying to access safe housing – barriers caused by the power and control dynamics of abuse, a need for safety and confidentiality, economic instability, the effects of trauma, and the lack of affordable housing in communities. Nobody should have to choose between staying in an unsafe home and having no home at all.

Welcome to Safe Housing Partnerships, the website for the Domestic Violence and Housing Technical Assistance Consortium! We hope you find useful resources and tools that advance your work at the critical intersection of domestic violence, sexual assault, homelessness, and housing. Please check back frequently, as we continue to add resources, tools, and best practices from the field.

Staff Picked Resources

Creating Safe Housing Options for Survivors: Learning From and Expanding Research

2017
Cris Sullivan

This research brief provides a brief overview of the current and expanding evidence behind best practices in helping domestic violence survivors obtain safe and stable housing. It begins with evidence for three common core components of this work: mobile advocacy, flexible funding, and attending to safety. It then provides evidence for how services should be provided: survivor-driven, trauma-informed, and voluntary.

Domestic Violence Housing First Toolkit

2017
Washington State Coalition Against Domestic Violence

The Domestic Violence Housing First (DVHF) approach focuses on getting survivors of domestic violence into stable housing as quickly as possible and then continuing to provide support as they rebuild their lives. With safe and stable housing at its core, the key components of DVHF include: survivor-driven, trauma informed, mobile advocacy; flexible financial assistance; and community engagement. This toolkit is designed to provide materials and resources for organizations to use when developing or implementing the DVHF approach.

Coordinated Entry: Confidentiality Requirements in Practice

2018
National Network to End Domestic Violence

This document provides guidance on coordinated entry (CE) model best practices. The guidance was developed based on feedback from practitioners in the victim services field who are currently participating in HUD Continuums of Care (CoCs) and are in compliance with the confidentiality-related legal requirements of the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) and the Family Violence Prevention and Services Act (FVPSA). These insights aim to adhere to federal confidentiality requirements that were created to ensure safety by protecting the identities of victims of domestic violence, while simultaneously ensuring that those victims have access to the type of housing they need in their community of choice.

Safety Planning for Survivors of Domestic and Sexual Violence: A Toolkit for Homeless/Housing Programs

2018
National Alliance for Safe Housing

Survivors face numerous barriers to keeping or establishing safe housing, often forcing them to devise unsafe housing arrangements, live in danger on the streets, or even to stay with or return to an abusive partner just so that they and their children have beds to sleep in. The victim services system offers lifesaving support and resources to countless survivors, but in many communities those systems lack the capacity to help all survivors with their housing needs. This toolkit is designed to boost the ability of homeless/housing programs to confidently offer housing services that are meaningful, safe, and grounded in best practices for a survivor population.

Flexible Funding for Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault Survivors: Frequently Asked Questions

2019
National Alliance for Safe Housing
Washington State Coalition Against Domestic Violence

Flexible funding is financial support provided to survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault (DV/SA) to address whatever barrier exists between the survivor and safe housing stability. This document addresses frequently asked questions about flexible funding, including why it is an important housing strategy for survivors, what flexible funding can be used for, and more.

Popular Resource Categories

Domestic and sexual violence programs work within strict confidentiality guidelines to protect survivor safety, and achieving a good working relationship with partners across systems can be complex. These materials provide information to help promote a shared understanding.

Many programs are examining ways to better ensure access to services by eliminating requirements that can become barriers for those seeking help with housing and/or victim services.

Federal laws and policies have a significant impact on survivors' access to housing, and address topics including housing discrimination, emergency transfers, public housing, homelessness prevention, and more. This page provides links to the Violence Against Women Act, McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act, the HEARTH Act, and other relevant provisions in the law.