Merkley Supports Efforts to Assist Homeless Veterans

Merkley Supports Efforts to Assist Homeless Veterans

Washington, DC –
Oregon’s Senator Jeff Merkley signed on Tuesday as a co-sponsor of three bills to provide shelter and assistance to homeless veterans.  The bills will authorize funding to expand housing and health services for low-income veterans.

“Our veterans put their lives on the line for our nation.  It is outrageous that we would allow any of them to fall through the cracks this way,” said Merkley.  “We must do more to eliminate homelessness among our veterans.  Our service members stand up for America when on duty.  America must stand up for our service members when they return home.”

The Homes for Heroes Act authorizes funding for an assistance program for community and nonprofit organizations to purchase, build, or rehabilitate housing for low-income veterans.  The bill also makes permanent the successful HUD-Veterans Affairs Supportive Housing Program (VASH), which provides permanent housing subsidies and case management services to homeless veterans with mental and addictive disorders.

The Zero Tolerance for Veterans Homelessness Act authorizes funding to expand the HUD-VASH program, and streamlines the application process for nonprofits building supportive veteran housing.  The bill also expands funding for health care to ensure that once veterans have housing, they are provided with the health services necessary to maintain that housing.

S.1366 is a bill that will allow taxpayers to designate a portion of their income tax payment for the Homeless Veterans Assistance Fund.