On our most recent (May 9) national call for the “HoUSed: Universal, Stable, Affordable Housing” campaign, we received news from Capitol Hill, learned about trends in the criminalization of homelessness across the country, discussed efforts to connect low-income families to the Child Tax Credit (CTC), heard updates from the field and NLIHC’s ERASE team, and more.
NLIHC’s Kim Johnson shared the latest news about the reconciliation negotiations and the fiscal year (FY) 2023 appropriations process. Democratic leaders in Congress continue to be interested in reviving a reconciliation package but will need to reach a compromise on an outline for the package soon if they hope to enact a bill before the end of the year. Appropriations negotiations are also underway, although committee leaders in both chambers are reportedly still far away from reaching an agreement on topline funding numbers.
Lily Milwit from the National Homelessness Law Center (NHLC) presented findings from NHLC’s report Housing Not Handcuffs, which tracks the efforts of states and localities to enact laws that unjustly criminalize people experiencing homelessness for engaging in life-sustaining activities in public, including sleeping, resting, and camping. Findings from NHLC’s 2019 report indicate that the number of laws criminalizing homelessness has increased in every measured category since 2006, and the organization’s 2021 state supplemental report showed 48 states and DC have at least one law criminalizing homelessness. The Housing Not Handcuffs campaign has developed model legislation through which communities can push back on laws criminalizing people experiencing homelessness.
The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities’ Janne Huang shared new resources from the Get It Back campaign, which provides outreach materials and training to organizations helping families with low incomes claim the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) and Child Tax Credit (CTC) on their taxes. The campaign is hosting a webinar on May 19 at 1 pm ET to provide additional information to advocates interested in helping low-income families claim the CTC and other tax credits.
Sophie Siebach-Glover and Rebecca Yae from NLIHC provided updates on the latest available emergency rental assistance (ERA) spending numbers, including demographic data for ERA recipients disaggregated by state. According to the U.S. Department of the Treasury, ERA programs have distributed a total of $26 billion to households. Participants in the call also received field updates from Housing Resource Center of Monterey County’s Alexa Johnson, who discussed her organization’s landlord incentive initiative, which is designed to persuade landlords to participate in the housing voucher program. Jacquelyn Simone from the Coalition for the Homeless in New York shared findings from the coalition’s recent State of the Homeless report, and Maria Duvuvuei from Community Legal Aid in Akron, Ohio, discussed recommendations developed during her group’s eviction prevention summit.
National HoUSed campaign calls now occur every other week. Our next call will be held on May 23 from 2:30 to 4:00 pm ET. Register for the call at: tinyurl.com/ru73qan
Watch a recording of the May 9 call at: tinyurl.com/2bx5rn2s
View presentation slides from the May 9 call: tinyurl.com/2p9bm9sa