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The Homeless Strategy Office (HSO) serves as a focal point for addressing homelessness comprehensively, strategically, and compassionately. 

Help Address Homelessness in Austin

As part of the homelessness response, the City of Austin collaborates with agencies, community organizations, and individuals working to make homelessness rare, brief, and nonrecurring. If you’re here to learn more about what’s happening, you can:

  • Help an individual experiencing homelessness you can call 3-1-1 to connect them to support; if you encounter a person experiencing a mental health crisis, 9-1-1 now has a mental health option you can use to request emergency help.
  • Access information about the City policies, strategies and programs that prioritize ending homelessness, including the Housing-focused Encampment Assistance Link (HEAL) Initiative.
  • Learn about the many organizations at work and track progress through the Austin Homelessness Dashboard.
  • Join the effort by getting involved with the programs and community organizations making a difference in our community.

Together we can realize the promise of a compassionate and thriving Austin for everyone.

Learn more about homelessness in Austin.

Read news about the City's homelessness response efforts.

Public Spaces Initiatives

Managing public spaces such as roads, bridges, parks and other City owned land, requires balancing all human interests. The City of Austin provides a coordinated, cross-departmental response to encampments that prioritizes the health and safety of all Austinites and strives to preserve human dignity and respect. Staff prioritize locations for cleanup and closure based on their immediate threat to public health and safety.  There are currently hundreds of encampments occupying public spaces.

Currently, Austin does not have enough emergency housing units for everyone experiencing homelessness. When an encampment is closed and individuals do not have a place to go, they will often move to another location sometimes in areas that are more difficult to reach or further out of sight or will go back to a closed encampment. Until more emergency housing is available, our community will continue to experience encampments.

Take Care During Covid-19

If you are experiencing homelessness, or are at risk of becoming homeless, the City is here to help you during this public health crisis.

  • If you are experiencing symptoms of COVID-19 (cough, fever, and shortness of breath) or have been exposed to the virus call the CommUnity Care COVID Hotline at 512-978-8775 to learn about helpful City resources.
  • Get advice and testing information from a nurse at 512-972-5560.
  • Get the latest information about case management and ongoing healthcare during COVID-19.
  • Access Safety Net resources that can help you stay in your current housing.

More information about COVID-19 in the City of Austin at