This dissertation is a process and impact evaluation of the Santa Monica Homeless Community Court. At homeless courts, misdemeanor quality of life cases arising from an individual's homelessness are resolved through alternative sentencing that requires participants to work towards permanent housing and obtain treatment to address underlying issues such as mental health disorders and substance use disorders. Although homeless courts have the potential to increase permanent housing placement and decrease recidivism, homeless courts have not been well-studied. There is only one publicly available homeless court evaluation, which included a recidivism impact analysis using an unmatched comparison group and did not include a housing impact analysis.
My research uses qualitative and quantitative methods to answer the following research questions:
- How do government entities and non-profit social service organizations work together to deliver the Santa Monica Homeless Community Court?
- How can the Santa Monica Homeless Community Court's enrollment and retention be improved?
- Is graduation from the Santa Monica Homeless Community Court associated with improved housing outcomes and decreased recidivism?
Table of Contents
Qualitative Methods Used to Examine Program Delivery and Explore Potential Ways to Improve Enrollment and Retention
How Do Government Entities and Non-Profit Social Service Organizations Work Together to Deliver the Santa Monica Homeless Community Court (Research Question 1)?
Part V: How Can the Santa Monica Homeless Community Court's Enrollment and Retention Be Improved (Research Question 2)?
Quantitative Methods Used to Estimate Effect of Graduation on Housing Outcomes
Is Graduation from the Santa Monica Homeless Community Court Associated with Improved Housing Outcomes (Research Question 3)?
Conclusions and Policy Recommendations