Alliance Online News: Shutdown Continues, Debt Ceiling Deadline Approaches


Newsletters | October 15, 2013

October 15, 2013    
    ISSUES  |  POLICY  |  SOLUTIONS  |  NEWS & EVENTS Forward Editor: Emanuel Cavallaro    
Spotlight On...
Shutdown Continues, Debt Ceiling Deadline Approaches

The partial government shutdown has now remained in effect for two weeks, and the United States will default on its debts unless Congress votes to raise the debt ceiling by this Thursday, October 17. It seems increasingly likely that any deal to end the shutdown will be tied to a deal to raise the debt ceiling. Attempts by those involved to negotiate separate or combined deals on the shutdown and debt limit have thus far failed to gain traction.

Currently, Senators Harry Reid (D-NV) and Mitch McConnell (R-KY) are negotiating a plan that would likely: fund the government at fiscal year (FY) 2013 levels until January 15, 2014; extend the debt limit until February; and require the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to certify that agencies are able to verify the incomes of those receiving subsidies to buy health insurance on Affordable Care Act (ACA) exchanges. Notably, the deal would delay talks around altering sequestration.

This morning, House GOP leaders proposed a plan to fund the government until January 15 and raise the debt ceiling until February 7, while preventing the Treasury from delaying default after that date. The plan would also eliminate health care benefits for lawmakers and cabinet officials, require income verification for ACA subsidies, and suspend the ACA medical device tax for two years. It remains to be seen what the final solutions will be and whether they will be reached by the fast-approaching October 17 deadline.

The shutdown has not yet had any deleterious impacts on homeless assistance programs, since they are currently spending FY 2012 and FY 2013 funds, and are considered essential programs because they protect against imminent threats to the safety of human life.


Register for the 2014 Family and Youth Conference

The website and online registration for the Alliance's 2014 National Conference on Ending Family and Youth homelessness are now live. The conference will be held at the Sheraton New Orleans Hotel in New Orleans, on February 18 through 19. Please visit the conference website to learn more about the conference and register to attend.

Webinar: Child Welfare Agencies, Identifying and Addressing Families' Housing Needs

On Monday, October 21, at 3 p.m. ET, the Alliance will host a webinar that will explore how housing needs can impact the outcomes of families receiving child welfare family preservation or reunification services. Speakers will provide an overview of the strategies that child welfare agencies are crafting to address families' housing needs and improve agency outcomes, including developing partnerships with homeless service providers.

Committee Holds Hearing on the Effect of Shutdown on VA Benefits

Last Wednesday, October 9, at 10:30 a.m. ET, the House Veterans Affairs Committee held a hearing titled "Effect of Government Shutdown on VA Benefits and Services to Veterans." Eric K. Shinseki, secretary of the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), served as the sole witness. Shinseki noted that the shutdown has slowed the review of benefit claims and has led to the furloughing of employees of the Veterans Benefit Administration and the Office of Information and Technology, many of whom are veterans. He explained that the work VA does in partnership with HUD to end veteran homelessness has been impacted by the lapse in appropriations, but did not specify how so in his testimony.

Last Week on Ending Homelessness Today

Data Points: Housing First and Homeless Individuals with Mental Illness
By Sam Batko

Last week, in acknowledgement of Mental Illness Awareness Week we devoted our research blog post to the impact of Housing First on the individuals with severe mental illness-particularly the impact on their involvement with the criminal justice system.

Homelessness and Mental Health: Moving Past Stereotypes
By Lisa Stand

Many people automatically associate homelessness with mental illness, and while certain groups of people experiencing homelessness do live with severe mental health conditions, this is not true of all homeless people. In this post, we look at the connection between homelessness and mental illness.

What I Learned from My Son's Chronic Homelessness
By Paul Gionfriddo

In this guest post, Paul Gionfriddo, a former Connecticut State Representative and Mayor, blogs about the lessons he learned from his son's own struggles with mental illness and homelessness.

More on the blog

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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