HUD and VA Secretaries Announce Homeless Veterans Housing Initiatives
HUD Secretary Ben Carson and U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Secretary Robert Wilkie recently announced $35 million in grants to combat veteran homelessness. The funding will be provided through the HUD-Veterans Affairs Supportive Housing (HUD-VASH) program to 212 public housing agencies across the country to provide a permanent home for over 4,000 homeless veterans.
The HUD-VASH program combines rental assistance vouchers from HUD with case management and clinical services provided by the VA. Since 2008, more than 93,000 vouchers have been awarded and approximately 150,000 homeless veterans have been served through the HUD-VASH program. More than 600 PHAs administer the HUD-VASH program, and this most recent award includes 22 additional PHAs, increasing HUD-VASH coverage to more communities.
In the HUD-VASH program, VA Medical Centers (VAMCs) assess veterans experiencing homelessness before referring them to local housing agencies for these vouchers. Decisions are based on a variety of factors—most important, the duration of homelessness and the need for long-term, intensive support in obtaining and maintaining permanent housing. The HUD-VASH program includes both the rental assistance the voucher provides and the comprehensive case management that VAMC staff offers.