Coordinated Access Networks (CAN)/Homeless Assistance Programs

DOH has implemented networks of community providers across the state to work with households experiencing homelessness.  These networks form a statewide system for accessible, standardized, assessment and referral processes to community resources within 8 geographic regions for people experiencing a housing crisis or homelessness.

To begin this process households must call 2-1-1 and dial #3 and #1 to speak to a contact specialist trained to assess for individual and family needs to prevent the need for emergency shelter.  If a 2-1-1 contact specialist is unable to identify resources, an individual or family will be offered a CAN assessment appointment in a community of their choice.  During the local CAN assessment, staff will again attempt to identify resources to divert individuals or families from shelter.  If diversion from shelter is not an option, the individual or family will be placed on a shelter wait list if a shelter bed is not immediately available.  CT is not a right to shelter state.   Emergency shelter beds are not guaranteed. 

Completing a CAN assessment is not a guarantee of housing resources.  The purpose of the CAN assessment is to identify an individual or family’s needs to resolve their housing crisis.  If a household is assessed and prioritized with a high need for housing with multiple barriers to acquiring housing on their own, the CAN community providers will include the household on the prioritized waiting list for housing.  Housing resources available through the CAN are prioritized for individuals and families who meet the literal homeless definition of the federal government’s Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).

To begin the process you may:    
• If you are hearing impaired use the TTY number: 1-800-671-0737.
    • If you are outside of Connecticut or have difficulties using the 2-1-1-number, dial 1-800-203-1234.
    • Dial 2-1-1 from anywhere in Connecticut.