(Washington, D.C.) – Today, U.S. Senator Patty Murray (D-WA) announced that the Department of Labor has chosen to award the Washington Department of Veterans Affairs with $800,000 in grants to assist homeless veterans in Washington state. The grant funding, part of the Homeless Veterans’ Reintegration Program (HVRP), will be used to reincorporate homeless veterans into the labor force.
The funding will be distributed to the following organizations and locations in Washington state:
- $300,000 – Washington Department of Veterans Affairs - Seattle-Tacoma-Bremerton Metropolitan Area
- $200,000 – Washington Department of Veterans Affairs - Eastern Washington, Western MT, Northern OR, ID
- $300,000 – Snohomish County Workforce Development - Snohomish County
"Too many of our veterans have served our nation only to come home to unemployment and homelessness. Ensuring that our nation’s heroes have housing and jobs when they return home is the least a grateful nation can provide,” Senator Murray said. “These grants are an important step towards reaching that goal and this funding will go a long way towards helping homeless veterans in Washington state.”
HVRP grantees enroll thousands of homeless veterans annually in programs that involve emergency shelter, substance abuse counseling and treatment, job counseling and referral, employment assistance, transportation, housing and clothing.
The HVRP program requires grantees to involve organizations in the local community. Many HVRP programs focus on partnering with the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), and the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), local faith-based and community organizations, and social service agencies.
Earlier this year, Senator Murray worked to secure $75 million for housing vouchers that are being distributed to help 10,070 homeless veterans find housing across the country, including 250 in Washington state. Senator Murray secured the funding using her role as Chair of the Transportation, Housing and Urban Development (THUD) Appropriations Subcommittee.
Some facts about veterans homelessness in Washington state and the U.S.:
According to a 2006 report by the National Alliance to End Homelessness, Washington state had 6,800 homeless veterans, or 1.04 percent of vets in the state.
There are an estimated 1,200 veterans on the streets on any night in King County alone.
Convergent sources estimate that between 23 and 40 percent of homeless adults are veterans.
The U.S. Department of Veterans estimates that as many as 200,000 homeless people are veterans on any given night, and that over the course of the year, approximately 336,627 veterans experience homelessness.
A report from the National Alliance to End Homelessness, found that veterans make up one-quarter of the U.S. homeless population.
The report also found that although veterans make up about 11 percent of the civilian adult population, they represent 26 percent of homeless people