6/03/2016 — 

PROVIDENCE, RI – In an effort to provide essential housing and supportive services for homeless veterans, U.S. Senator Jack Reed today announced that the Housing Authority of Providence will receive $132,552 in federal funding to provide supportive housing assistance to 21 chronically homeless veterans through the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and Veterans Affairs Supportive Housing (HUD-VASH) program.

“These veterans have experienced a variety of challenges and hardships after they left the service.  Our goal is to get them into permanent, supportive homes and address their needs from there.  The HUD-VASH program takes a comprehensive, coordinated approach to helping veterans in need.  But it all starts with having a safe, stable place to call home, and these vouchers are a real lifeline,” said Reed, a member of the Appropriations Committee and the Ranking Member of the panel’s subcommittee on Transportation, Housing and Urban Development (THUD), which oversees HUD-VASH funding.

Reed helped secure $60 million for HUD-VASH as part of the THUD bill in fiscal year 2016 to assist homeless veterans nationwide, and ensured that Rhode Island would receive an allocation of vouchers.  Since 2008, Rhode Island has received 232 HUD-VASH vouchers.

HUD-VASH is a collaborative program that combines rental assistance for homeless veterans with case management and supportive services through the VA.  Veterans participating in the HUD-VASH program receive assistance to rent privately-owned housing.  The housing vouchers allow veterans and their families to live in market-rate rental units while the VA provides case management services.

Senator Reed has been a strong supporter of housing assistance and homelessness prevention initiatives.  In addition to his work on HUD-VASH, he also authored the Homeless Emergency Assistance and Rapid Transition to Housing (HEARTH) Act that President Obama signed into law.  The HEARTH Act reauthorized the landmark McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act and simplified and consolidated three competitive HUD homelessness assistance programs into one program and allowed more funding to flow to communities that can demonstrate a commitment to accomplishing the goals of preventing and ending homelessness.  For fiscal year 2016, $2.25 billion was provided for the Continuum of Care and Emergency Solutions grant programs, a $115 million increase over FY 2015 funding.

Veterans who are homeless, or at imminent risk of becoming homeless, can call the National Call Center for Homeless Veterans hotline at: 1-877-4AID VET (877-424-3838).  The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs founded the hotline to ensure that veterans in need have free, 24/7 access to trained counselors.  The hotline is intended to assist homeless veterans and their families, VA Medical Centers, federal, state and local partners, community agencies, service providers, and others in the community.