Public Housing Authorities are encouraged to apply for funding
Today, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) announced that it will make available $25 million to public housing authorities (PHAs) for HUD’s Housing Choice Voucher (HCV) Mobility Services. Through this program, PHAs will help an estimated 6,000 voucher families with children get a better opportunity to live in low-poverty neighborhoods with high-performing schools and other strong community resources.
“Access to educational opportunities and other resources have lasting impacts on the lives of families with children,” said HUD Secretary Marcia L. Fudge. “Through Mobility Services, families will have the option to live in better neighborhoods with good schools so that their quality of life and health improve, and their children can thrive.”
This program is based on HUD’s Community Choice Demonstration program that built upon recent research that shows growing up in neighborhoods with lower levels of poverty improves children’s academic achievement and long-term chances of success and reduces intergenerational poverty. Children who move to low-poverty neighborhoods have also been shown to experience lower rates of hospitalizations, lower hospital spending, and some changes in mental health over the long-term follow-up. Adults given the chance to move to low-poverty neighborhoods experience reductions in obesity and diabetes.
While the HCV program currently offers families with vouchers the opportunity to live in a neighborhood of their choice (including low-poverty, opportunity neighborhoods), families with HCVs may continue to encounter barriers to using their vouchers in communities with expanded opportunities. Common barriers include the inability to save enough money for a security deposit, inadequate time to find a unit, landlord unwillingness to rent to voucher holders, or limited awareness of neighborhood amenities, such as the location of high-performing schools.
The Housing Choice Voucher Mobility Services Program will support PHAs in addressing barriers to accessing housing choices by offering mobility-related services to increase the number of voucher families with children living in opportunity areas. In addition to offering mobility-related services, PHAs will work together in their regions to adopt administrative policies that further enable housing mobility, increase landlord participation, and reduce barriers for families to move across PHA jurisdictions through portability.
The process and eligibility requirements to apply for the HUD’s Housing Choice Voucher (HCV) Mobility Services funding can be found online.