The D.C. Council debated several amendments to fiscal year 2022 budget legislation to include a measure to tax high-income earners at a higher rate to support a number of new initiatives, as well as a failed measure to allocate additional funds for hero’s pay — a financial incentive program for the city’s essential workers. The final votes are coming up in early August.
Permanent Supportive Housing
Following the mayor’s 2015 strategy to “make homelessness rare, brief and nonrecurring,” Homeward D.C. 2.0 expands on permanent supportive housing and rapid rehousing proposals to focus on individual, unaccompanied homelessness.
At a nearly nine-hour-long work session held on July 8, councilmembers deliberated over the mayor’s proposed budget, recommending a variety of changes intended to help bolster programs they feel are most needed.
The Mayor’s FY2022 request to increase the Housing Production Trust Fund is now being considered by the D.C. Council, but the fund has not met past targets to assist low-income residents.
Spurred by deepening housing, homelessness and gentrification crises, a nationwide wave of militant housing activism is growing as its successes go viral.
Stephanie Sneed, the executive director of DC Fair Budget Coalition, offers perspective on how DC should utilize federal COVID relief funding.
Reporting on the Built for Zero program, which has been utilized by Bakersfield to effectively eliminate chronic homelessness through its innovative personalized approach.
DC was too slow to spend money that could have paid for 520 permanent supportive housing vouchers. These losses are permanent because funds appropriated for housing vouchers largely do not roll over.
DHS is holding town halls at its PEP-V sites to tell residents that PSH vouchers have run out, so most will need to find another plan for where to go before PEP-V closes in September.
Ward 1 Councilmember Brianne Nadeau recently recommended DC government buy hotels to continue providing rooms for people experiencing homelessness who are especially vulnerable to COVID-19, and to turn them into more housing. The new federal pandemic-relief bill includes funds that can be used for just that.
Public housing programs fall far too short when it comes not just to housing the homeless in the first place, but at retaining housing once gotten
During the holiday season, DHS ran its fourth annual A Home for the Holidays campaign and states they leased up 335 families and singles to housing.
All three PEP-V sites have been at or near capacity for the past 5 weeks, stressing workers and residents who have to wait weeks to get their problems resolved.
Thirteen people living in D.C. shelters have tested positive for COVID-19 cases since Nov. 18 according to data from the Department of Human Services, ending a 20-day streak of no new cases among shelter residents.
More than 100 women experiencing homelessness were cast out of the Harriet Tubman Women’s Shelter during a Sept. 22 deep clean of the building. While out on the lawn, some told stories of verbal abuse from staff and guards. They say the rules and conditions are pushing them to their breaking point.
A Street Sense Media analysis determined that only six of the 24 at-large DC Council candidates on the ballot advertised specific plans with measurable goals to address homelessness in their online platforms. We sent them five questions about local poverty.
The amended budget, which increases funding for building new affordable housing units, providing tenants with rental relief and extending social services, faces a final vote by the Council on July 21, after which it will be submitted to the Mayor.
Members of the racial justice collective Freedom Fighters D.C. began to sit in at the plaza in protest of the mayor’s proposed police budget. Hundred joined them over the course of two days.
The Way Home campaign and the Fair Budget Coalition are calling on the D.C. Council to allocate an additional $66 million to build more permanent supportive housing and fund critical homelessness prevention programs.
Hope Has a Home committed to opening 48 medical respite beds in the District, doubling the city’s capacity for this service. The program was launched by AmeriHealth Caritas D.C. and Volunteers of America Chesapeake & Carolinas in partnership with Unity Health Care and Pathways to Housing.