Operated by local nonprofit, The Road Home, the Homes Not Jail Program provides services to improve housing stability, criminal justice and behavioral health outcomes for the persistently homeless. These are individuals who have spent between 90 and 364 days over the previous year in emergency shelter or on the streets or other homeless circumstance.
Absent a different approach, they are at clear risk of remaining homeless. Complicating factors include the long waitlist for housing programs in the county, lack of Medicaid health coverage and ineligibility for housing that goes first to the chronically homeless.
Homes Not Jail will offer 315 individuals a range of housing assistance and support services including access to behavioral health treatment and employment counseling. Rental assistance through the private rental market and intensive case management are included in the six-year project. Salt Lake County announced the Homes Not Jail Program alongside a second Pay for Success initiative to address the problem of adult men who are at high risk for repeat stays in the county jail.
The second program is known as REACH (Recovery, Engagement, Assessment, Career, and Housing). It will be managed by First Step House. Together, the two initiatives form a $11.5 million project that expects to serve approximately 550 individuals in need. Reinvestment Fund financing is joined by support for the project from James L. Sorenson, the Gail and Larry H. Miller Foundation, the Ray & Tye Noorda Foundation, the George S. and Dolores Doré Eccles Foundation, Synchrony Bank, Zions Bank, and Ally Bank in addition to Northern Trust, QBE Insurance Group Limited, and Living Cities. Sorenson Impact Center provided project management, SLCO PFS 1 administered as the Community Foundation of Utah served as the financial and legal intermediary for both PFS projects and Dorsey & Whitney, Utah provided legal assistance.