June 28, 2024

HUD: New Resources and Research Launched to Support LGBTQI+ Americans During Pride Month

HUD released a new website and research that will enhance data collection, identify barriers, and help LGBTQI+ people find housing assistance.

During this Pride Month, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) took action to protect LGBTQI+ Americans, taking crucial steps to uplift resources and best practices for housing providers, so no one must choose between being housed and feeling welcomed. This strategy is a collaboration between HUD’s Offices of Community Planning and Development, Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity, Public and Indian Housing, Housing, and Policy Development and Research, demonstrating HUD’s united commitment to reducing barriers and protecting LGBTQI+ Americans.

“Having stable housing is essential to the foundation upon which individuals can build a better future and thrive,” said HUD Acting Secretary Adrianne Todman. “This Pride Month, HUD has taken important measures to ensure LGBTQI+ individuals have the resources they need to find affordable housing and support in their communities.”

On June 25, HUD released a PD&R Edge article that identifies barriers LGBTQI+ homeless youth and young adults (YYA) face when accessing shelter and stable housing, as well as best practices providers could take to support this population. Homelessness is a persistent and growing problem which disproportionately affects LGBTQI+ youth. In 2023, approximately 8,000 unsheltered individuals identified as transgender, a gender that is not singularly female or male, or gender questioning according to HUD’s Annual Homelessness Assessment Report.

The article draws on more than six months of listening sessions with approximately 30 LGBTQI+ youth and 45 service providers across five metro areas. LGBTQI+ youth and young adults voiced the need for youth-focused affirming shelter spaces, trauma informed and culturally competent practices, sustained care and service continuity even after finding permanent housing, and more education on how to report instances of discrimination.

“Today’s young adults are tomorrow’s adults and too many have been left behind, unsheltered and victimized by housing discrimination,” said Demetria McCain, Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary for Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity. “A healthy society is one that takes care of its most vulnerable which HUD strives to do.”

“Over the past few months, the HUD team has met with LGBTQI+ youth and young adults and service providers in Atlanta, Memphis, Dallas, Prince George’s County, and New York City where they talked with us frankly about their unique needs,” said Marion McFadden, Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary McFadden for Community Planning and Development. “They should be focused on building their futures but instead are struggling to keep a roof over their heads. Everyone seeking support in hard times deserves respect, so I am grateful to those who articulated ways to improve our programs.”

This is not all – HUD also released another PD&R Edge article, which discusses actions to gather and safeguard data and support LGBTQI+ Americans. Since publishing the Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity (SOGI) Data Action Plan in March 2023, HUD has made considerable progress in collecting, planning, and coordinating data, furthering HUD’s goal to support underserved communities, ensure LGBTQI+ Americans have fair and equal access to housing, and provide access to quality, affordable homes for all.

“HUD’s SOGI Data Action Plan demonstrates the agency’s commitment and plans to assess, improve, and monitor the health and well-being of LGBTQI+ Americans over time. These data are crucial for developing effective strategies that address the specific challenges that LGBTQI+ individuals face,” said Solomon Greene, Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary Solomon Greene for Policy Development and Research. “We are committed to integrating these insights and implementing equitable data collection in our research and policy development.”

Additionally, HUD launched a new website that consolidates resources for the LGBTQI+ community. This new resource contains information for shelters and housing providers on how to comply with laws and regulations protecting LGBTQI+ Americans from discrimination and provide services in an inclusive manner. The website also directs LGBTQI+ people who believe they have experienced housing discrimination to file a complaint. In addition, the website assists individuals with finding assistance and shelter and links to important research that has been done on the housing needs of the LGBTQI+ community.

These actions are only the latest effort in HUD’s continued work to address homelessness and provide access to affordable housing for LGBTQI+ Americans. For additional information on how the Biden-Harris Administration is supporting the LGBTQI+ community, please see the White House Fact Sheet on actions across the federal government.

This post was originally published here.