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HUD voucher program funding has helped veterans at risk of homelessness

Andy Uhler Dec 11, 2020
Heard on: Marketplace Morning Report
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The Department of Housing and Urban Development announced this week it is giving out $46 million more in rental assistance and housing vouchers to help veterans at risk of homelessness. Kyle Grillot/AFP via Getty Images

HUD voucher program funding has helped veterans at risk of homelessness

Andy Uhler Dec 11, 2020
The Department of Housing and Urban Development announced this week it is giving out $46 million more in rental assistance and housing vouchers to help veterans at risk of homelessness. Kyle Grillot/AFP via Getty Images
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The Department of Housing and Urban Development is giving out $46 million in rental assistance and housing vouchers to help veterans at risk of homelessness. It comes at a time when many people are about to lose their housing as eviction moratoriums end.

About 37,000 veterans were homeless in the U.S. at last count in 2019, down from 74,000 in 2010, according to HUD. Marybeth Shinn at Vanderbilt University has researched homelessness in the U.S. and says, with this money, “we can guess that will house at least 5,000 and maybe 6,000 veterans.”

Shinn said there’s been political consensus to fund this housing voucher program every year: $50 million in 2011, $60 million in 2016.

“So those are real numbers,” she said.

Last year, the program received about $40 million. Shinn said the decrease in veteran homelessness could be used as an example of how to deal with housing security for all Americans.

Steve Berg with the National Alliance to End Homelessness agrees. “But the big difference is that for veterans, they put some serious money behind it,” Berg said.

According to Veterans Affairs, there are currently more than 83,000 veterans using vouchers through the program.

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