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Multi-Service Center and Office of Housing Liaison Go Above and Beyond to Help Residents Experiencing Housing Challenges

Thursday, April 18, 2024

The City of Cambridge is committed to providing Housing Support Services for all residents.

Many departments in Cambridge work together to offer a comprehensive and coordinated approach to respond to the varied housing needs and issues of our residents and our city.

The Office of the Housing Liaison (OHL) and the Multi-Service Center (MSC) play key roles in addressing housing rights, eviction prevention, and homelessness to ensure that if you are housed in Cambridge, you have access to:

  • Information about tenant and landlord rights, and responsibilities
  • Assistance in navigating the complex world of affordable housing opportunities
  • Support in obtaining resources and services.

The Multi-Service Center is part of the Department of Human Service Programs. It has been the go-to resource for eviction prevention and homeless services in Cambridge for almost 40 years. Staff administer financial rental assistance programs, refer and connect residents to support resources such as legal services, financial literacy programs, food pantries and shelters and offer housing search workshops and individualized assistance. The MSC is a direct service arm of the Continuum of Care (CoC), which offers a pathway to permanent supportive housing. Finally, MSC is the point of contact for many of the City’s housing and homeless service provider partnerships including Eliot Community Health Services, Home Start, De Novo, and Cambridge and Somerville Legal Services.

The Office of the Housing Liaison was established in 2019. As a division of the Executive Office/City Manager’s Department, it serves as a dedicated housing resource that responds to individual, programmatic and systemic housing needs and gaps. Staff educate tenants, homeowners, and landlords on housing rights and responsibilities, offer intensive field-based support services to stabilize housing, and help community members navigate complex housing situations like building sales. The OHL also acts as a convener to coordinate citywide responses to support populations who are particularly vulnerable to housing instability or access. OHL partners with Cambridge Economic Opportunity Committee (CEOC) to implement the City’s response to hoarding concerns, co-chairs the LGBTQ+ Friendly Housing Task Force, and serves as the point of contact for the Commonwealth’s Family Safety Net Shelter at the Middlesex Registry of Deeds.

Both OHL and MSC work together to respond to housing crises such as fires or other emergencies in the city.

The City’s commitment to housing is reflected in the work of OHL and MSC as well as the many city partners that are essential to ensuring that housing is affordable, accessible, and safe. The partners include the Community Development Department, Inspectional Services Department, Human Rights Commission, Commission for Persons with Disabilities, Council on Aging, Cambridge Public Health Department, Department of Public Works, and both the Fire and Police Departments.

Have a Question or Concern about Housing in Cambridge?

Come to visit us! Both MSC and OHL are located at 362 Green Street on the first floor. Daily walk-in hours are available to residents who are facing housing or other challenges.

To learn more about these departments and housing rights and opportunities, check out these links:





Many departments in Cambridge work together to offer a comprehensive and coordinated approach to respond to the varied housing needs and issues of our residents and our city.

The Multi-Service Center in Central Square.
The Multi-Service Center in Central Square.
A sign extending from a building that reads "Cambridge Multi-Service Center."
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