Waters bill expands foster youth housing assistance
Bill would increase access to federal housing assistance for foster youth through HUD’s Family Unification Program
Expanding Housing Opportunities for Foster Youth Act of 2018 would provide a more sustainable solution for young people transitioning out of foster care
LOS ANGELES — Rep. Maxine Waters, D-Los Angeles (43rd Dist.), Ranking Member of the House Committee on Financial Services, introduced the Expanding Housing Opportunities for Foster Youth Act of 2018, a bill to provide a more sustainable solution for young people transitioning out of foster care.This bill would permanently reauthorize $200 million annually towards the Department of Housing and Urban Development’s Family Unification Program (FUP), which is estimated to provide much-needed funding for every foster youth at risk of homelessness.
“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,” said Waters.
“This is why I have introduced a bill to increase access to federal housing assistance for foster youth through HUD’s Family Unification Program. FUP is an important resource that is severely underfunded and this legislation will ensure the needs of foster youth are being met without cutting the amount of aid available to other vulnerable populations.
“If we are serious about helping foster youth and addressing the issue of homelessness in this country, it is imperative that we enact legislation to adequately fund federal assistance programs created to help all Americans access safe, decent and affordable housing,” Waters said.
Waters added that she introduced the Expanding Housing Opportunities for Foster Youth Act of 2018 to not only increase funding for housing assistance programs but also to facilitate access to supportive services for foster youth to help them transition into adult life.
Additionally, in contrast to recent Republican housing proposals, “this legislation rejects imposing harmful work requirements as a condition for receiving federal housing assistance,” Waters added.
This legislation is supported by the National Low Income Housing Coalition.