Housing Help Centre’s ID Clinic
The ID Clinic helps vulnerable people without a permanent address get the identification they need to help with their housing stability goals, such as access to health care, benefits, social assistance, bank accounts, and housing programs.
Self-referral is available to anyone without a permanent address (i.e. in shelter, unhoused, living in a hotel, in an unsafe situation or couch surfing).
For those with permanent housing but demonstrate an urgent need for ID replacement, you can access the clinic with a referral from a partner agency, such as Ontario Works, the Niagara Assertive Street Outreach Team, homeless / women’s shelters, Ontario Works, a partner agency in Niagara’s Housing & Homelessness system, mental health worker or housing worker.
Refer yourself or a client here.
Please note that all of our ID Clinic prioritizes those who are most at risk of homelessness.
For agency referrals, you can help your clients and our ID Clinic by:
- Requesting in the referral form to email you the birth certificate application forms and consents for the province in which your client was born. Some provinces have more complicated processes than others, and if your client needs an in-person appointment and help with the forms, knowing what is going to be asked or gathering in advance of the appointment is helpful.
- Leveraging your relationship, knowledge or files about the client. This could be helpful and the key to getting the ID replaced. Some clients have complicated and painful family histories, or might not know or remember details about those listed on their birth certificates, and asking questions about parentage can be traumatic.
- Knowing in advance that previous attempts at getting ID replaced failed. It helps us decide when to refer out to an expert or do more problem-solving before submitting another incomplete application that could get rejected. Getting support from a volunteer who does genealogical research, the Legal Clinic, or a Member of Provincial Parliament might be necessary.
- Doing some problem-solving. For example, some ID replacement applications require a guarantor, and many clients come to the appointment believing that they don’t know a guarantor. Helping them problem solve or being a guarantor yourself (if you meet criteria) is helpful. If we know in advance that a guarantor is required for the province but there isn’t one available, it helps us to have alternative forms ready in advance.
- Let’s work together!