Shelter Oversight and Compliance

OTDA Home Programs & Services Shelter Oversight and Compliance


Shelter Oversight and Compliance is responsible for the oversight of shelters for families and individuals experiencing homelessness across the state. These shelters can be operated by local social services districts or not-for-profit agencies. Oversight includes the development and administration of agency policies in accordance with State regulations that establish the programmatic and physical plant standards for the shelters.

Shelter Oversight and Compliance reviews and approves shelter operational plans and applications for certification, which set forth the shelter provider’s plan for meeting the associated regulatory requirements and habitability standards. Oversight activities of the shelter program in New York include onsite annual inspections that focus on health and safety issues, including building safety, compliance with state and local codes, and review of the social services programming designed to promote self-sufficiency. On a daily basis, shelters provide nutritional meals, on-site supervision, assessment services, permanent housing preparation, recreational services, information and referral services, access to healthcare and childcare services.

Fiscal and budgetary information provided by shelters and local districts is also reviewed in order to establish the rates of payment to the shelters, which are adjusted periodically. Expenditures made by shelters are also monitored to ensure that funding is claimed appropriately.

Shelters serving fewer than 10 families or fewer than twenty single adults are not required to be certified by OTDA unless the shelter is operated by a local social services district. However, all shelters in New York State certified or not, are subject to oversight by OTDA.

For more information about the provision of shelter programs and services, please email or call (518) 486-4040.

If You are Homeless or At-Risk of Homelessness

If you are currently homeless or at-risk of homelessness please contact your local Department of Social Services.

If you are located in New York City (NYC), please call 311 or visit the NYC Department of Homeless Services (DHS) where there is information on intake centers, prevention programs, etc.

Back to Top