Representative Waters Introduces Bill to Expand Housing Assistance for Foster Youth

House Financial Services Committee Ranking Member Maxine Waters (D-CA) introduced on May 16 the “Expanding Housing Opportunities for Foster Youth Act of 2018.” This bill would permanently reauthorize $200 million annually for HUD’s Family Unification Program (FUP), which helps provide stable housing for young people transitioning out of foster care.

FUP is severely underfunded, and both the president’s FY19 budget request and the draft House funding bill fail to provide resources for the program in FY19. “Homelessness is one of the biggest barriers to economic mobility, and research shows that more than one out of every four foster youth who age out of foster care will experience homelessness by age 21,” Ms. Waters stated in a press statement. A recent bill (H.R. 2069) introduced by Representative Michael Turner (R-OH) also aims to help youth aging out of foster care but includes harmful work requirements.