Equal Justice Works: Veteran Homelessness
Jesse K. Vazzano, LICSW
National Director
HUD-VA Supportive Housing
October 2014
VHA Health Care Networks
VETERANS HEALTH ADMINISTRATION
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VA Homeless Programs
• Initiative to end Veteran
Homelessness
• Health Care for Homeless
Veterans
• Supportive Services for Veterans
Families
– Rapid Re-Housing
– Homelessness Prevention
– Contract Residential Services
– Safe Haven
– Outreach
• Veteran Justice Programs
• Grant and Per Diem Transitional
Housing (approx. 15,500 beds)
• Housing and Urban DevelopmentVA Supportive Housing
• Community Employment
VETERANS HEALTH ADMINISTRATION
– Health Care for Reentry Veterans
– Veterans Justice Outreach
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Snapshot of Veteran Homelessness
33.2%
Reduction in
Veteran
homelessness
since 2010
VETERANS HEALTH ADMINISTRATION
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Housing and Urban Development-VA Supportive Housing
(HUD-VASH)
• Joint effort between HUD and VA to move Veterans and their families out
of homelessness into permanent supportive housing
• Housing Choice Voucher Program combined with clinical and supportive
services
• Largest permanent supportive housing program in the country
– 66,411 vouchers allocated
– Additional 10,000 requested in FY 2015
• Expanded eligibility
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Homeless
Eligible for VHA care
Within income limits
Not a lifetime registered sex offender
• Focus on housing the chronically homeless and highly vulnerable
VETERANS HEALTH ADMINISTRATION
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HUD-VASH: Principles of Housing First
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Housing as a basic human right
Respect, warmth, and compassion for all clients
Commitment to working with clients for as long as they need
Scattered-site housing; independent apartments
Separation of housing and services
Consumer choice and self-determination
Recovery orientation
Harm reduction
VETERANS HEALTH ADMINISTRATION
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Supportive Services for Veteran Families (SSVF)
• Rapid rehousing and prevention of homelessness
• Aim of supportive services is to help Veteran families quickly regain
stability in permanent housing
• Range of supportive services to resolve immediate crisis and promote
housing stability
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Legal assistance
Landlord mediation
Financial assistance
Transportation assistance
Child care
• Non-financial and financial services
• Short-term intervention with case management
• Supports principles of Housing First
VETERANS HEALTH ADMINISTRATION
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SSVF: Basic Concepts
• Most important focus is housing stability
• Goal is to provide sufficient resources to stabilize housing or
end homelessness
• Serves entire household
• Intervention is short-term
• Serves are offered on a “but for” basis. Must be able to
define for screening
• Intensity and scope of services must match identified needs
• Services integrated with community resources
VETERANS HEALTH ADMINISTRATION
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Role of Supportive Services to End Homelessness
• Philosophy into practice to support a client-centered
approach
• Integration into the community
• Social inclusion
• Physical and emotional comfort
• Moving from a house to a home
• Harm reduction
• Motivational interviewing
VETERANS HEALTH ADMINISTRATION
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Partnerships
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Federal
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VA (VHA, VBA, NCA)
HUD
Health and Human Services (SAMHSA)
US Interagency Council on Homelessness
National Alliance to End Homelessness
State
– Interagency Council on Homelessness
– Department of Mental Health and
Hygiene
– Department of Housing
– Department of Labor
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Collaborate to utilize resources
efficiently and effectively
Identify needs and how they can be
addressed through collaboration
Shared institutional knowledge
Reduced silo effect
Bring together different subject
matter experts to problem solve
– Clinicians
– Developers
Local
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City Government
Public Housing Authorities
Non-Profit
Veteran Service Organizations
VETERANS HEALTH ADMINISTRATION
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Contact Information
Jesse K. Vazzano, LICSW
National Director, HUD-VA Supportive Housing
VHA Homeless Programs
White River Junction VAMC
215 North Main Street
Bldg T61, Room 103
White River Junction, VT 05009-0001
802.295.9363 x5059 Office
802.359.3327 Mobile
802.280.6655 Fax
[email protected] E-Mail
VETERANS HEALTH ADMINISTRATION
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