Effects of sustained abstinence among treated substance-Abusing homeless persons on housing and employment

Academic Article


  • Objectives. We examined whether cocaine-dependent homeless persons had stable housing and were employed 6, 12, and 18 months after they entered a randomized controlled trial comparing 2 treatments. Methods. One group (n=103) received abstinence-contingent housing, vocational training, and work; another group (n=103) received the same intervention plus cognitive behavioral day treatment. We examined baseline and early treatment variables for association with long-term housing and employment. Results. Although the enhanced-treatment group achieved better abstinence rates, the groups did not differ in long-term housing and employment stability. However, consecutive weeks of abstinence during treatment (and to a lesser extent, older age and male gender) predicted long-term housing and employment stability after adjustment for baseline differences in employment, housing, and treatment. Conclusions. Our data showed a relationship of abstinence with housing stability. Contrasting these results with the increasingly popular Housing First interventions reveals important gaps in our knowledge to be addressed in future research.
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    Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Milby JB; Schumacher JE; Wallace D; Vuchinich R; Mennemeyer ST; Kertesz SG
  • Start Page

  • 913
  • End Page

  • 918
  • Volume

  • 100
  • Issue

  • 5