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This year, we’ve reformed the Index to focus on unhoused youth and young adults (YYA), aligning it with their experiences and policy needs. Shifting from harm reduction to transformative change, some jurisdictions may see lower scores than before. This is a deliberate strategy, not a setback. Lower scores should motivate, not discourage, jurisdictions. They present an opportunity to adopt policies that effectively tackle and prevent youth homelessness, fostering meaningful progress.

Enforceable Right to Housing for All Children

  • Right to housing

The jurisdiction has an enforceable right to housing for all (or all unhoused) children

An important part of the right to housing is the ability to protect and enforce it through legal measures. This means that governments have a responsibility to ensure that there is enough affordable housing for everyone and a duty to immediately resolve homelessness through short or long-term housing options. This right should be available to all but, at the very least, to all unhoused children and transition age youth.

Model Statute:

Key Metric Score Type of Policy Description
2.0 Transformative The jurisdiction has an enforceable right to housing for all (or all unhoused) children
0.0 Status Quo No law found
No Data No Data No Data

Cite: National Homelessness Law Center and True Colors United. ", Enforceable Right to Housing for All Children" Accessed: June 22, 2024.

Right to Housing

The Index is centered around the fundamental human right to housing. A right to housing is the guarantee that every youth and young adult can access and maintain safe and habitable housing. The elements of a right to housing are:

  1. Security of tenure;
  2. Availability of services;
  3. Affordability;
  4. Accessibility;
  5. Habitability;
  6. Location;
  7. Cultural adequacy. 

“There should always be somewhere for everybody to go. We all should be able to have the housing we need. It shouldn’t be something that you HOPE to get, it should be a given. Build more shelters, build more housing.”K. Livingston

These maps are provided as legal information only and should not be used as legal advice for your specific situation. If you need help with any of the issues described on this website, please check out the Homeless Youth Legal Network (HYLN) directory OR email or call HYLN for help finding a referral to a lawyer.