Diversion services, sometimes called shelter diversion, assist households in quickly securing temporary or permanent solutions to homelessness outside of the shelter and homeless services system. The main difference between diversion services and other housing-focused interventions centers on the point at which intervention occurs. Diversion services target households that are requesting entry into shelter or housing and have not yet accessed homeless services. Diversion services assist households to identify immediate, alternative housing arrangements and, if necessary connect them with services and financial assistance to help them obtain or return to housing. Skilled diversion providers partner with households in finding creative solutions to their needs while reserving shelter beds for those families or individuals who have no other options.
While the term “diversion” is specific to the point at which the intervention occurs, the approach can be used throughout the entirety of the homeless response system.
For more information on diversion, refer to the Seattle – King County Integrating Principles of Diversion in our Homeless Response System
Between April 2016 – March 2017 diversion at Coordinated Entry Regional Access Points supported 242 households find housing outside of the homeless system.