Paso Robles, CA – Sept. 2, 2020      The temporary camping facility for homeless residents has been operational at the Borkey Flats site for a few weeks. The site has restrooms, showers, and a safe needle exchange program, and a safe parking area….. The City’s Community Action Team (CAT) has been visiting homeless encampments in the riverbed. They have visited 15-20 camps and informed individuals of the new camping site and of the city’s intent to clean up the riverbed to mitigate fire risk and protect water quality…… To date, three encampments have been cleaned up of all debris and waste products. The camping site has not seen high levels of utilization to date, but the city has seen a drop in fire activity since the CAT team has been active and cleanup has begun….. The city will need to move the Borkey Flats encampment in the winter given that it is in the flood plain, and continues to work with homeless service provider partners to identify long-term solutions…..     HOMELESS PERSPECTIVE CALIFORNIA TICKER    …..     …..
San Francisco, CA – Sept. 3, 2020     Bay Area universities and homeless advocates released a report on Thursday revealing the various barriers homeless San Franciscans face when accessing housing…..  The report’s authors, the Coalition on Homelessness and researchers with the University of California at Berkeley, San Francisco State University and Santa Clara University surveyed 600 temporarily housed San Franciscans, with a focus on transgender people …..  Participants revealed inequities that homeless transgender people face to obtain housing, poor shelter conditions, crowded living spaces and strict curfews, created even more barriers to housing. Fifty-eight percent of participants said they would prefer a legal homeless camp with basic amenities like showers and toilets while 34 percent reported having substance abuse issues…..     HOMELESS PERSPECTIVE CALIFORNIA TICKER     …..     …..
Stanton, CA – Sept. 3, 2020     The County of Orange and Jamboree Housing Corporation submitted three applications as co-applicants and in partnership with the City of Stanton under the State Homekey program, all located in the City of Stanton, for a total request of $28.1 million in funding…..   The County recently received word that the State reserved funding for both The Tahiti Motel and Stanton Inn and Suites applications….. Two of the motels identified for funds in the City of Stanton include The Stanton Inn and Suites, on Katella Avenue and the Tahiti Motel, on Beach Boulevard. A third motel is in negotiation with the motel owner, they say. By the end of the project, 132 new affordable homes will be available for those experiencing homelessness.   Although this does not yet represent an award from the State, it is one step closer to securing funding to make the Homekey program work…..     HOMELESS PERSPECTIVE CALIFORNIA TICKER…..     …..     …..  
Oxnard, CA – Sept. 3, 2020     The Vagabond Inn in Oxnard could soon transition from an affordable hotel option to permanent supportive housing for 70 of the county’s homeless residents, thanks to a state funding effort that aims to house California’s most vulnerable homeless individuals….. The Vagabond Inn is under consideration for funding under Project Homekey, the next phase in the state’s efforts to protect homeless residents who are high-risk for COVID-19. In July, Gov. Gavin Newsom announced $600 million in funding for cities and counties to convert motels, hotels and other housing types into permanent housing…..  “This is an opportunity that allows us to both respond to COVID-19 and respond to homelessness and the long-term need to provide housing,” said Oxnard Housing Director Emilio Ramirez…..     HOMELESS PERSPECTIVE CALIFORNIA TICKER     …..     …..
Sacramento, CA – Sept. 3, 2020     Gov. Newsom said Wednesday that California is making an “unprecedented” effort to address homelessness, two days after lawmakers failed to pass a bill to massively increase housing production….. The governor said the state has placed more than 22,000 homeless Californians in 16,400 hotel and motel rooms amid the pandemic, and is giving cities and counties $600 million to purchase the rooms and convert them into permanent housing….. Local governments also got another $628 million in emergency homelessness aid….. “It’s self-evident that this has to be our top priority and it is,” said Newsom……   A bill heading to Newsom’s desk would create a state Office to End Homelessness, led by a new “homelessness czar.” But the governor said Wednesday he already has a homelessness czar — a seemingly fluid title, given that he’s used it to refer to six people in the past two years, including himself……      HOMELESS PERSPECTIVE CALIFORNIA TICKER…..     …..
Oxnard, CA – Sept. 3, 2020     The Vagabond Inn in Oxnard could soon transition from an affordable hotel option to permanent supportive housing for 70 of the county’s homeless residents, thanks to a state funding effort that aims to house California’s most vulnerable homeless individuals….. The Vagabond Inn is under consideration for funding under Project Homekey, the next phase in the state’s efforts to protect homeless residents who are high-risk for COVID-19. In July, Gov. Gavin Newsom announced $600 million in funding for cities and counties to convert motels, hotels and other housing types into permanent housing…..  “This is an opportunity that allows us to both respond to COVID-19 and respond to homelessness and the long-term need to provide housing,” said Oxnard Housing Director Emilio Ramirez…..     HOMELESS PERSPECTIVE CALIFORNIA TICKER     …..     …..
San Francisco, CA – Sept. 3, 2020     Bay Area universities and homeless advocates released a report on Thursday revealing the various barriers homeless San Franciscans face when accessing housing…..  The report’s authors, the Coalition on Homelessness and researchers with the University of California at Berkeley, San Francisco State University and Santa Clara University surveyed 600 temporarily housed San Franciscans, with a focus on transgender people …..  Participants revealed inequities that homeless transgender people face to obtain housing, poor shelter conditions, crowded living spaces and strict curfews, created even more barriers to housing. Fifty-eight percent of participants said they would prefer a legal homeless camp with basic amenities like showers and toilets while 34 percent reported having substance abuse issues…..     HOMELESS PERSPECTIVE CALIFORNIA TICKER     …..     …..
Sacramento, CA – Sept. 3, 2020     Gov. Newsom said Wednesday that California is making an “unprecedented” effort to address homelessness, two days after lawmakers failed to pass a bill to massively increase housing production….. The governor said the state has placed more than 22,000 homeless Californians in 16,400 hotel and motel rooms amid the pandemic, and is giving cities and counties $600 million to purchase the rooms and convert them into permanent housing….. Local governments also got another $628 million in emergency homelessness aid….. “It’s self-evident that this has to be our top priority and it is,” said Newsom……   A bill heading to Newsom’s desk would create a state Office to End Homelessness, led by a new “homelessness czar.” But the governor said Wednesday he already has a homelessness czar — a seemingly fluid title, given that he’s used it to refer to six people in the past two years, including himself……      HOMELESS PERSPECTIVE CALIFORNIA TICKER…..     …..
Stanton, CA – Sept. 3, 2020     The County of Orange and Jamboree Housing Corporation submitted three applications as co-applicants and in partnership with the City of Stanton under the State Homekey program, all located in the City of Stanton, for a total request of $28.1 million in funding…..   The County recently received word that the State reserved funding for both The Tahiti Motel and Stanton Inn and Suites applications….. Two of the motels identified for funds in the City of Stanton include The Stanton Inn and Suites, on Katella Avenue and the Tahiti Motel, on Beach Boulevard. A third motel is in negotiation with the motel owner, they say. By the end of the project, 132 new affordable homes will be available for those experiencing homelessness.   Although this does not yet represent an award from the State, it is one step closer to securing funding to make the Homekey program work…..     HOMELESS PERSPECTIVE CALIFORNIA TICKER…..     …..     …..  
Paso Robles, CA – Sept. 2, 2020      The temporary camping facility for homeless residents has been operational at the Borkey Flats site for a few weeks. The site has restrooms, showers, and a safe needle exchange program, and a safe parking area….. The City’s Community Action Team (CAT) has been visiting homeless encampments in the riverbed. They have visited 15-20 camps and informed individuals of the new camping site and of the city’s intent to clean up the riverbed to mitigate fire risk and protect water quality…… To date, three encampments have been cleaned up of all debris and waste products. The camping site has not seen high levels of utilization to date, but the city has seen a drop in fire activity since the CAT team has been active and cleanup has begun….. The city will need to move the Borkey Flats encampment in the winter given that it is in the flood plain, and continues to work with homeless service provider partners to identify long-term solutions…..     HOMELESS PERSPECTIVE CALIFORNIA TICKER    …..     …..

Federal, State, and Local Policymakers Are Taking Action to Prohibit Housing Discrimination Based on Source of Income or Veteran Status

Low-income households with Setion 8 vouchers struggle to find landlords that accept them

By: Sarah Brundage
June 27, 2019 —

On June 26, Senator Tim Kaine (D-VA) reintroduced the Fair Housing Improvement Act of 2019 to protect veterans and low-income families from housing discrimination. The Fair Housing Improvement Act would expand the Fair Housing Act’s protections to prohibit discrimination based on source of income or veteran status. This bill was previously introduced by Senator Kaine and former Senator Orrin Hatch (R-UT). 

Too often, low-income households that have secured a Section 8 Housing Choice Voucher still face an uphill battle in finding affordable housing because a landlord is unwilling to rent to a voucher holder. Enterprise applauds Senator Kaine for his leadership in ensuring low-income families and veterans have fair and equal access to housing.

About “Source of Income” Discrimination

The Housing Choice Voucher program serves over 2.2. million households and can enable low-income families with children to move to safe neighborhoods with high-quality schools. However, the program is only effective if private landlords are willing to accept the subsidies as a “source of income” for rent payments. 

Although Low-Income Housing Tax Credit properties and other types of federally assisted housing are prohibited from discriminating against voucher holders, federal law does not prevent private landlords from rejecting housing vouchers. Rental listings will frequently state “No Section 8.” If a voucher holder cannot find a landlord willing to rent to them, they run the risk of losing their voucher before they can even use it. 

This issue extends to veterans served by the HUD-VASH Program. HUD-VASH helps homeless veterans and their families afford decent, safe, and sanitary housing through housing vouchers. [1] At the end of the 2018 Fiscal Year, there were 85,509 veterans with active HUD-VASH vouchers and 78,234 veterans in housing with a HUD-VASH voucher. [2] However, HUD’s most recent count estimates that 37,878 veterans remain homeless on any given night. [3]

Research shows that voucher holders in areas with voucher non-discrimination protection, or source of income discrimination protection, are more likely to succeed in using their vouchers. [4] States and localities are increasingly passing source of income discrimination protection, but more have not. According to the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, only 1 in 3 voucher holders are protected by non-discrimination laws. Federal protections would ensure that low-income households and veterans receiving housing assistance are not discriminated against. 

Enterprise Supports Expanding Federal Protections Against Housing Discrimination 

Currently, the Fair Housing Act prohibits housing discrimination on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, sex, familial status, and disability. Enterprise supports fair and equal access to housing and the expansion of Fair Housing Act protections to explicitly prohibit discrimination on the basis of source of income, veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity, or marital status

State and Local Successes. In addition to advocating for federal protections, Enterprise is also working to advance source of income discrimination protections at the state and local level. 

  • New York State. Most recently, Enterprise New York led the Statewide Source of Income Coalition and #BanIncomeBiasNY campaign and successfully advocated for the amendment of the New York State Human Rights Law to include source of income as a protected class, and for uniform exemptions statewide. In a last-minute budget victory in April 2019, New York banned source of income discrimination statewide, kicking off National Fair Housing Month with an important issue impacting over 600,000 New Yorkers who receive some form of supplemental income. Enterprise partnered with ERASE Racism, the Fair Housing Justice Center, and the New York Housing Conference on this important and successful effort.
  • Denver. In August 2018, the Denver City Council approved a measure that adds source of income protection to the city’s anti-discrimination ordinance, offering new protections for tenants who pay rent using federal housing vouchers or unconventional sources of income. Enterprise’s Denver office worked very closely with Councilmember Robin Kneich to draft the bill and, with our partners, supported its passage. 
  • Washington. Enterprise also supported the passage of HB 2578 in the State of Washington in 2018, outlawing source of income discrimination statewide. 
    Ohio.  Enterprise partnered on the introduction and passage of Cuyahoga County’s first Anti-Discrimination Ordinance in 2018 which includes additional housing protections for sexual orientation and gender identity. The ordinance will serve as the basis to advocate for amendments to include source of income and criminal background protections in 2019.

Enterprise will continue advocating for source of income discrimination protections across our local offices. Click here to view a full list of state and local source of income discrimination protections. 

Other federal proposals that would expand Fair Housing Act protections. Earlier this year, Senators Kaine, Susan Collins (R-ME), and Angus King (I-ME) introduced the Fair and Equal Housing Act of 2019, which would add gender identity and sexual orientation to the classes protected from discrimination under the Fair Housing Act. 

On May 17, the House passed the Equality Act, which would amend the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and other civil rights laws to include sexual orientation and gender identity as protected classes. The Equality Act would prohibit discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity in employment, housing, public accommodations, jury service, access to credit, federal funding assistance, and education. 

Article courtesy of Enterprise


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