Finding shelter in Greater Montréal
TEMPORARY SHELTER / Transitional housing
Short term to medium term
Shelter and housing resources clientele
Eligibility criteria for housing varies from one organization to another. In fact, it may vary according to gender, age and family circumstances.
- Gender: Some shelters only accommodate men, others just women and a few accommodate both. To have access to certain shelters, transsexual and transgender people may have to show their Health Insurance card to identify their gender.
- Age: In order to provide services better suited to shelter users, some have age restrictions (ex: minors, youth, seniors, etc.).
- Family circumstances: Some shelters are intended for pregnant women or parents with children. Please note that there are no shelters for couples or entire families if parents are older than 25.
- There exists specialised housing for people with aids.
- Indigenous peoples : The Native’s Women’s Shelter of Montreal specifically welcomes Native women, Inuit or Métis, as well as their children.
- Disabled people: Certain shelters are accessible to people with reduced mobility. You can find them on our website in the record of an organization with the following symbol:
- Shelters do not accept people who are intoxicated (drugs or alcohol),with the exception of the Maison l'Exode Alpha Pavilion in Montreal, which has a temporary accommodation of sobering.
- Shelters that accept pets are very rare.
How to have access to shelter
Procedures may vary from one organization to another.
Emergency shelters generally do not require identification (they are accessible to people without documentation) and accept people every day in the late afternoon. However, it is important to check their hours and availability before showing up.
Transitional housing and supportive housing require greater involvement from the users. Registration to this type of programme may entail waiting times and forms to fill out. In addition, people that are housed will be assessed to determine their willingness and motivation to begin a social reinsertion process.
Other related services
Day or evening centres for the homeless
Day or evening centres for the homeless are places where people can spend time to warm up in the winter or to receive various free services throughout the year. These services may include recreational activities, counselling, facilities to relax and take care of personal needs or any other support services.
For a detailed picture of day centres in Montréal, you can consult the study done for the City of Montréal in 2017: Portrait des centres de jour destinés aux personnes en situation ou à risque d'itinérance à Montréal.
Mobile units and street work
Many community counsellors patrol the streets so they may directly intervene with the homeless. Outreach street workers provide listening, psychosocial support, information and referrals to people in need. Many organizations also have needle exchange and STBI prevention programmes.
Shelters for victims of violence
These shelters are not for the homeless, but rather for victims of conjugal violence who find themselves without housing for a while. These are temporary emergency shelters and the addresses are always confidential. They accept victims of violence and their children.
To find a shelter for victims of violence, please call SOS violence conjugale at 1-800-363-9010 (across Québec, 24/7).
Did you know?
In Montréal, three organizations for the homeless are among the oldest community organizations implemented in Québec and are still operating. These organizations were founded in the 19th century and each holds more than 125 years of history!