July 21, 2016

Hirono & Boozman Introduce Bill to Save Key Veterans Housing Programs

Without Action, Key Programs Will Expire on September 30

Senators Mazie K. Hirono and John Boozman (R-AR), members of the Senate Veterans’ Affairs Committee, introduced legislation to reauthorize a number of important federal homeless veteran programs for the next fiscal year.

The Keeping Our Commitment to Ending Veteran Homelessness Act would renew seven Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) and Department of Labor programs that provide outreach and services to homeless veterans and their families. These programs are set to expire on September 30, 2016.

“Supporting our veterans is a solemn obligation that does not end on an arbitrary day in September. This is especially true for our homeless veterans who depend on the services these programs provide,” said Senator Hirono. “Organizations in Hawaii and throughout the country are working hard every day to help every veteran in this country have a permanent and stable roof over their heads. We cannot allow funding for these critical programs to lapse, and I thank Senator Boozman for joining me in this fight to keep our commitments to veterans and their families.”

“This legislation is essential to fulfilling our commitment to the men and women who served our nation in uniform. We can be proud of organizations in Arkansas and across the country that provide our veterans with the tools and resources they need to rebuild their lives. This legislation builds on this foundation and continues the influential partnerships that our veterans rely on to get back on their feet. Preventing disruptions to these services must be a priority,” said Senator Boozman.

“This reauthorization demonstrates Congress’s continued commitment to the programs that work to prevent and end veteran homelessness,” said Baylee Crone, executive director of the National Coalition to End Veterans Homelessness. “These programs are emblematic of the strong, effective partnership - between the federal government and local non-profit service providers - that is responsible for the 35% decrease in veteran homelessness we have seen since 2010. I thank Senator Hirono and Senator Boozman for their continued support of the effort to end and prevent homelessness for each and every vulnerable veteran in this country.”

Last year, the VA served more than 600 homeless veterans across Hawaii.