Community Development, Homelessness, Reports and Publications

PSC Policy Brief Examines Connections Between Housing & Early Childhood

Partnership for Strong Communities

Connecticut has the 2nd largest wealth disparity in the nation, with many families experiencing homelessness – and many more at-risk. Absent a safe, decent, affordable place to live, it is next to impossible to achieve good health, positive educational outcomes, or reach one’s economic potential. By the same token, stable housing provides an ideal launching pad for employment and the delivery of education, job training and other social services focused on improving long-term outcomes for families and children.

A new policy brief released by the Partnership for Strong Communities, Housing and Early Childhood: Building Brighter Futures, highlights the impact of housing and homelessness on children birth to 5 years. The Housing and Early Childhood policy brief compiles data from the U.S. Census Bureau, CT Coalition to End Homelessness, and Annie E Casey Foundation, indicating that many Connecticut families are at risk of homelessness:

  • In 2012, 41% of CT children lived in households with a high housing cost burden.
  • In 2013, 1295 CT children age 0 to 5 lived in emergency or transitional housing.
  • In 2014, CT ranked 16th out of all U.S. states for risk of child homelessness.

These numbers are disconcerting given that infants, toddlers, and preschoolers who are homeless have an increased risk of developmental delays, physical and mental health conditions, and behavioral problems, compared to their housed peers.

Improving early childhood development and well-being depends on a comprehensive approach through increased collaboration between systems, such as the education, employment, housing, health care, transportation and child care systems. Immediate solutions and policy recommendations include:

  • Amend CT’s Child Care and Development Fund Plan
  • Increase rapid re-housing supports for families
  • Support CT’s Secure Jobs CT Initiative
  • Expand transportation systems and routes

Click here to read the full brief.


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