Concept Draft: Critical Shortage of Stable Housing and Related Services

The Issue

In the Farmington area and beyond, the availability of permanent stable housing and related services remains critically low. People who qualify for housing assistance, whether they experience mental health challenges or not, may need supportive services such as housing/resource navigation and case management. Additionally, people who experience/are diagnosed with mental health challenges are incarcerated and jailed at much higher rates than people who may not experience mental health challenges or carry a mental health diagnosis. Case management staffing has been experiencing burnout which hinders support for individuals in need.


  1. Given current service gaps, it could be helpful to offer additional case management, resource navigation, and re-entry services in Franklin County. Potentially offering similar housing/resource navigation through positions such as recovery specialists, peer support coordinators, alongside case managers.
  2. Some educational resources exist and are offered by shelters and/or community action programs on a limited basis. One example is Rent Smart, a module-based curriculum that guides renters to learn about their housing rights, laws, tenant, and landlord responsibilities, as well as additional housing/rental resources. Once someone completes this course, they receive a paper certificate that can be added to future rental applications.
  3. There is also an annual county-specific Community Needs Assessment that is used through the Western Maine Community Action Program to address gaps such as mental health and housing.


Modules – Rent Smart (


To submit feedback, ideas, or a personal story relating to this issue statement, please send it to the CCSM either by mail at: 219 Capitol St. Suite 7, Augusta, ME 04330, or email at [email protected].