The Crisis Housing Assistance Program provides short-term housing assistance to people with a serious mental illness who are receiving inpatient or residential mental health care or Substance Use Disorder treatment for 90 days or less.

The Arc Minnesota administers this program under contract with the Minnesota Department of Human Services Behavioral Health Division.

You can call 952-915-3698 at any time for assistance. We will respond within 48 hours of your call.

What does Crisis Housing Assistance Program cover?

The Crisis Housing Assistance Program supports people who cannot pay housing related costs because they are paying for treatment. It also supports people who have lost their income while in treatment.

The program covers rent, mortgage, and most utilities for three month periods. Utilities include heating, electricity, water, sewer, and garbage disposal. It can also help cover a limited amount of phone costs.

Funds cannot be used for past due bills that occur outside of the treatment period, crisis beds, adult foster care, residents in assisted living, nursing homes, group homes, or board and lodge.

People must meet the following criteria to be eligible for the Crisis Housing Assistance Program:

  • A serious mental illness diagnosis.
    • Minnesota identifies a serious mental illness diagnosis as one “that seriously limits a person’s capacity to function in primary aspects of daily living such as personal relations, living arrangements, work, and recreation.”
  • Requiring inpatient or residential mental health care and receiving treatment for 90 days or less.
    • This includes inpatient or residential Substance Use Disorder Care (must provide documentation of serious mental illness). Download a verification for here.
    • Partial hospitalization programs (PHP) are also eligible.
  • Requiring support to maintain community-based housing, whether rented or owned.
    • This is inclusive of lease payments made in subsidized housing situations such as Section 8, Group Residential Housing (GRH) or subsidized units under Low-Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC), HOME Investment Partnerships Program (HOME), or Neighborhood Stabilization Program (NSP).
  • Household meets definition of low or moderate income.
    • Low or moderate income is defined by the Department of Housing & Urban Development to equal up to 80% of the HUD area median income.
    • Income limits are updated by HUD on an annual basis and can be found on HUD’s web site at
  • Individuals applying from community hospitals should be assisted with a referral for mental health case management services.
  • People receiving outpatient treatment do not qualify for this program.

What do I need to apply?

To apply you will need to provide documentation on:

  • Social Security Number
  •  Household income documentation
    • Screenshots are accepted of participants’ bank account information, and the screenshot of direct deposits must include identifying information.
    • Income can include employment, unemployment payments, Minnesota Supplemental Aid (MSA), Supplemental Security Income (SSI) payments, Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) payments, etc.
  • Housing and utility related costs
  • Payment information
  • Treatment facility name and contact
  • Release of information (download here—English.)
  • Written verification from a medical professional
  • If receiving Substance Use Disorder treatment, you will need verification of a serious mental illness (download form here—English)

Other ways to apply

Paper applications and information releases can be mailed to:
The Arc Minnesota
Attn: Wendy Gerlach
P.O. Box 64007,
St. Paul, MN 55164

Applications and information releases can be received by fax at: 763-540-0071

Download a paper application and Release of Information by clicking here (English)
Download a Release of Information by clicking here (English)
Download a Verification Form for Substance Use Disorder Treatment (English)

You can call 952-920-0855 at any time for assistance. Our phone line is available from 8:30 am to 4:30 pm, Monday through Friday. If we do not answer your call we will respond within 48 hours.

You can also reach out at