Survivors Achieving Stable Housing: Implementation, Challenges, and Lessons Learned

Jill Theresa Messing, Kristie A. Thomas, Allison Ward-Lasher, Jessye Johnson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


There is a movement toward permanent housing as an alternative to emergency shelter for survivors of intimate partner violence (IPV). Through a case study, this article illuminates the challenges survivors encountered at multiple levels after being offered one of 25 permanent housing choice vouchers (HCVs) as part of the Survivors Achieving Stable Housing project. Obtaining an HCV is a complicated and lengthy process; survivors transitioning from emergency shelter may face time limits on shelter stays while awaiting this permanent housing option. This article identifies challenges, such as difficulties with landlords, moving costs, and a lack of affordable housing, similar to issues reported in previous research. However, specific to IPV survivors, intersecting U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act of 2013 (S. 47) policies led to challenges in implementing and interpreting rules and guidance for IPV survivors. Survivor safety from an abusive partner and across other aspects of their lives is of particular concern to survivors as they consider housing options. Given the overlap of homelessness and IPV, social workers in both systems must be knowledgeable about the intersecting issues survivors face as well as the policies affecting them so they can advocate effectively for their clients.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)49-58
Number of pages10
JournalSocial Work (United States)
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1 2021


  • homelessness
  • housing
  • intimate partner violence

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Sociology and Political Science


Dive into the research topics of 'Survivors Achieving Stable Housing: Implementation, Challenges, and Lessons Learned'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this