Aid for Homeless During COVID-19
The CARES Act allocated $17.2 billion for the Veterans Health Administration during this pandemic. The Department of Veteran Affairs (VA) will use $300 million to combat the increased risk of veterans experiencing homelessness from the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. According to the VA, veterans who are homeless or at risk for homelessness are particularly vulnerable to COVID-19 because of limited access to health care, pre-existing conditions, and lack of access to basic infection prevention and control methods.
This money will go to three VA programs to help support homeless veterans and at-risk veterans from becoming homeless. These programs include:
Supportive Services for Veteran Families Program (SSVF)
$202 million was provided to SSVF so they could offer access to crucial services to prevent homelessness for veterans and their families. This program helps very low-income veteran families to alleviate the expected wave of evictions that can result from the extensive unemployment.
SSVF can make time-limited temporary payments for veterans to cover rent, utilities, and security deposits. They will also re-house veterans who have become homeless due to this nationwide quarantine shutdown.
Grant and Per Diem Program
$88 million was given to this program which funds community agencies that offer services to homeless veterans and those at-risk. These services include supportive housing, case management, meals, crisis intervention, and counseling. Emergency location will also be provided for veterans who need to be isolated. This program will assist those who are in need of basic monetary assistance as a result of unemployment or under-employment.
Health Care for Homeless Veterans Program
$10 million is being used to provide temporary shelter to veterans and families who are required to quarantine themselves to prevent the spread of the virus. Besides emergency shelter, supportive services, and necessary medical and rehabilitative treatment will be allocated to those in need.
You can find more information in regard to these programs at VA.gov
SSVF Program: https://www.va.gov/homeless/ssvf/
Grant and Per Diem Program: https://www.va.gov/homeless/gpd.asp
Health Care for Homeless Veterans Program: https://www.va.gov/homeless/hchv.asp
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