The Administration has committed to ending veterans' homelessness, but it will need improved policy to make that goal a reality.

The Departments of Veterans Affairs (VA) and Housing and Urban Development (HUD) recently released a supplemental report to the 2010 Annual Homeless Assessment Report to Congress on veterans. The supplement estimated that 76,000 veterans experience homelessness on any given night.

President Obama and VA Secretary Eric Shinseki have made ending veterans homelessness a top priority, prompting Congress to explore several legislative solutions to the problem. In order to truly end homelessness among veterans, resources must be available to identify every veteran who is homeless or about to become homeless. Programs must be able to immediately secure the needed housing and services for individuals and/or their families.

The key elements of a solution to veterans’ homelessness include:

  • Permanent supportive housing;
  • Temporary housing/services and re-housing;
  • Rapidly re-housing homeless and at-risk veterans;
  • Assessing housing status at discharge and afterwards; and
  • More housing options.


Library Resources

Federal Policy Brief | February 12, 2014
This resource looks at new Supportive Services for Veteran Families Program (SSVF) funding opportunities. It provides tips for Continuums of Care (CoCs) to use in selecting an organization to receive Priority 1 funding under the new NOFA.
Federal Policy Brief | January 18, 2012
The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development has issued a final regulation to implement changes to the definition of homelessness contained in the Homeless Emergency Assistance and Rapid Transition to Housing (HEARTH) Act. The new definition is outlined here.
Solutions Brief | December 20, 2010
This brief identifies five promising strategies that homelessness assistance systems have used to create or strengthen their relationship with their local VA Medical Center.