President Biden delivered the State of the Union address before a joint session of the U.S. House of Representatives and Senate on February 7. President Biden called for increased investments in quality and affordable housing and additional resources to end veteran homelessness.
“Let’s help veterans afford their rent because no one should be homeless in this country, especially not those who served it,” stated President Biden.
President Biden announced a proposal to make housing assistance universally available to all veterans experiencing homelessness. The president’s upcoming budget will triple the number of extremely low-income veterans who can access housing assistance, paving the way toward an entitlement for veterans. The proposal builds on the Biden-Harris administration’s success in utilizing Housing First to permanently house more than 140,000 people (see Memo, 1/30/23). By using a Housing First approach, the country has reduced veteran homelessness by 11% since 2020 and cut veteran homelessness in half since 2010. The U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs announced last month that more than 40,000 veterans were permanently housed in 2022 alone using a Housing First approach.
NLIHC applauds the Biden administration for its commitment to end veteran homelessness and calls on the administration and Congress to bring these solutions to scale to ensure that every individual has a safe, quality, affordable, and accessible place to call home.
“The administration’s proposal to make housing assistance universally available to all veterans experiencing homelessness – combined with the administration’s strong leadership and commitment to Housing First – can help end veteran homelessness once and for all,” said NLIHC President and CEO Diane Yentel. “Congress has a tremendous, bipartisan opportunity to build on the nation’s success in addressing veteran homelessness by focusing on what works and bringing it to scale for the more than 500,000 people experiencing homelessness on any given night and the millions more people on the cusp.”
To fully end America’s housing and homelessness crisis, Congress and the administration must increase investments in long-term solutions to America’s housing crisis. This process should start with ensuring rental assistance is universally available to all eligible households, preserving and expanding the supply of homes affordable to people with the lowest incomes through investments in the national Housing Trust Fund and public housing, making emergency rental assistance programs permanently available to households in need, and strengthening and enforcing robust renter protections.
Read President Biden’s State of the Union address at: https://bit.ly/3HNdo5l
Learn more about the president’s proposal at: https://bit.ly/3I8c6Dp
Read Diane’s Twitter thread on the State of the Union address at: https://bit.ly/3HHevnn