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The National Health Care for the Homeless (HCH) Council is a home for those who work to improve the health of homeless people and who seek housing, health care, and adequate incomes for everyone. In the National HCH Council, agencies and individuals, clinicians and advocates, homeless people and housed people come together for mutual support and learning opportunities, and to advance the cause of human rights.

The National Health Care for the Homeless Council began as an element of the 19-project HCH demonstration program of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the Pew Memorial Trust. We are now 104 Organizational Members and over 1000 individual members, organized as the HCH Clinicians' Network, the National Consumer Advisory Board and the Respite Care Providers’ Network. Our Organizational Members include grantees and subcontractors of the federal Health Care for the Homeless funding stream, other health care providers, and advocacy organizations.

Statement of Principles and Mission

We recognize and believe that:

  • Homelessness is unacceptable.
  • Every person has the right to adequate food, housing, clothing and health care.
  • All people have the right to participate in the decisions affecting their lives.
  • Contemporary homelessness is the product of conscious social and economic policy decisions that have retreated from a commitment to insuring basic life necessities for all people.
  • The struggle to end homelessness and alleviate its consequences takes many forms, including efforts to insure adequate housing, health care, and access to meaningful work.
The mission of the Council is to help bring about reform of the health care system to best serve the needs of people who are homeless, to work in alliance with others whose broader purpose is to eliminate homelessness, and to provide support to Council members.
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A program of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Substance Abuse & Mental Health Services Administration, Center for Mental Health Services