Alliance Online News: Housing Vouchers


National Alliance to End Homelessness

Newsletters | January 29, 2008

January 29, 2008    

    POLICY  \|  DATA + RESEARCH  \|  TOOL + TRAINING  \|  NEWS + MEDIA Forward Editor: Samantha Batko    
Spotlight On...
Housing Vouchers End Family Homelessness, Finds New Brief

A recent random controlled study found that housing vouchers led to a 74 percent reduction in the incidence of homelessness among study participants. This study is one of many reviewed in a new research brief, published by the Homelessness Research Institute, and written by Jill Khadduri of Abt Associates. The brief reviews the research literature on how housing vouchers can protect low-income families from becoming homeless and help families who are currently homeless access stable housing. Considering the overwhelming research evidence, the author recommends that Congress should "return immediately to a policy of steady growth in the Housing Choice Voucher Program at about 100,000 units per year..."

Housing Vouchers are Critical for Ending Family Homelessness



The Alliance has partnered with the National Network for Youth and Volunteers of America to recommend modifications to the Runaway and Homeless Youth Act during the reauthorization process. Proposed changes to this federal law include:
  • Increasing the allowable appropriation levels to expand shelter, outreach, and housing capacities;
  • Requiring that the Administration to conduct research on the national incidence of homelessness among unaccompanied youth and a comparative study of youth housing outcomes;
  • Expanding the Transitional Living program to allow respite, short-term care of older youth; seeking the creation of an appeal process for unsuccessful applicants;
  • Requesting the Administration develop performance standards for funded programs; and
  • Seeking applicant competency in serving special needs populations including youth of color, youth with disabilities, gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender youth, pregnant and parenting youth, and undocumented youth.

Maxwell Awards Winners Announced

The Fannie Mae Foundation, in collaboration with the Partnership to End Long Term Homelessness, today announced the Seventeenth Maxwell Awards of Excellence winners. Four organizations received the Maxwell Award of Excellence, along with a $75,000 grant from the Fannie Mae Foundation to continue work in the field of supportive housing for homeless individuals and families. An independent advisory committee selected winners in four categories:
  • Housing for Homeless Veterans - The Connection Fund: Legion Woods, New Haven, CT;
  • Housing for Chronically Homeless Individuals - Downtown Emergency Service Center: 1811 Eastlake Project, Seattle, WA;
  • Housing for Homeless Youth - La Casa Norte: Solid Ground Supportive Housing Program, Chicago, IL; and
  • Housing for Homeless Families - Umpqua Community Action Network: Grandview Homes, Roseburg, OR.

2008 Tax Credit Outreach Campaign Kit Now Available

The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities announced the availability of the 2008 Tax Credit Outreach Campaign Kit. This resource provides community groups, social service agencies, and employers with the materials and information needed to conduct community outreach efforts promoting the Earned Income Credit (EIC) and the Child Tax Credit (CTC). Throughout the United States, millions of people are working hard to make life better for themselves and their families. Families working in low-wage jobs, including homeless workers, could be missing out on these federal tax benefits worth thousands of dollars. Claiming the credits can help put an eligible worker on the path to securing housing, pursuing higher education, obtaining dependable transportation, covering out-of-pocket health care costs, or paying for quality child care.

In addition to exploring six key elements of an effective Outreach Campaign, the Kit contains full-color posters, flyers, fact sheets, a full stock of outreach strategies and examples of where they are being used successfully, and a guide to finding even more information on the Tax Credit Outreach Campaign website.

A free copy of the kit can be ordered by emailing CBPP provides technical assistance and training to help start or bolster an Outreach Campaign. Contact the Tax Credit Outreach team at 202-408-1080 with questions or for additional materials.
Buffalo News told the story of 200 volunteers from the Homeless Alliance of Western New York who took to the streets last week to count the homeless population. The census lasted 24 hours as outreach volunteers descended upon 70 sites in Western New York, including soup kitchens, pantries, overnight emergency shelters, transitional apartments and boarding houses. The census is one of many taking place across the country.

The San Diego Union Tribune chronicled a day in the life of San Diego's Homeless Outreach Team (HOT), which began nearly a decade ago as a unique collaboration of uniformed police officers, social workers, and mental health clinicians. The team patrols the doorways, bridges, parks, and vacant lots that are home to the city's homeless population. Its charge is to pool resources and assist homeless people by helping them collect any owed benefits, such as Social Security or disability pay; find them housing; and steer them to the medical treatment or psychiatric care they may need. Last year, the team made approximately 1,200 contacts with 700 homeless people.
The National Alliance to End Homelessness is a nonpartisan, non profit organization dedicated to solving the problem of homelessness and preventing its continued growth.

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