Another 100 homeless veterans in Pinellas County will receive housing through the HUD-Veterans Affairs Supportive Housing program announced by HUD. This recent award to the Pinellas County Housing Authority brings the total number of homeless veterans that the agency can assist through the HUD-VASH program to 280.
“It’s a national disgrace that one out of every six men and women in our shelters once wore a uniform to serve our country,” said HUD Secretary Shaun Donovan. “But we know that by providing housing assistance and case management services, we can significantly reduce the number of veterans living on our streets. Working together, HUD, VA and local housing agencies are making real progress toward ending veteran homelessness once and for all.”
VA Medical Centers work closely with homeless veterans then refer them to public housing agencies for these vouchers, based upon a variety of factors, most importantly the duration of the homelessness and the need for longer term more intensive support to obtain and maintain permanent housing. The HUD-VASH program includes both the rental assistance the voucher provides and the comprehensive case management that VAMC staff provides. Veterans participating in the HUD-VASH program rent privately owned housing and generally contribute no more than 30 percent of their income toward rent.
“Our goal is to work with the Bay Pines VAMC to get homeless veterans in Pinellas County housed in their own apartment as soon as possible” said Debra Johnson, PCHA’s executive director. As employment and training are also key elements to ending veteran’s homelessness, PCHA stands committed to working with veterans to coordinate PCHA’s Self-Sufficiency program services and resources to further assist veterans in overcoming the barriers they experience, and to help them in becoming self-sufficient.
To learn more about the HUD-VASH program at PCHA, please call 443-7684, ext. 3042 or call the Bay Pines VAMC directly at 727-398-6661.