02.14.07

Burr Introduces Services for Ending Long-Term Homelessness Act

Bipartisan legislation establishes grant program to help end chronic homelessness

Washington, D.C. - Today U.S. Senator Richard Burr introduced the Services for Ending Long-Term Homelessness Act. Burr's legislation provides supportive housing, which combines housing with supportive services such as mental health, substance abuse, and employment opportunities for chronically homeless individuals. The bill establishes a grant program through the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services to help end chronic homelessness. Senator Jack Reed (D-RI) is the lead co-sponsor of the legislation.



"I believe we have the opportunity to help solve the issue of chronic homelessness in a cost-effective way by providing permanent supportive housing and supportive services," Burr said. "These services can actually help reduce the number of visits of homeless individuals to emergency rooms, shelters, and hospitals which also reduces costs."



Currently, over a half a million Americans do not have a place to call home each night and two to three million people find themselves homeless at some point during the year. There are over 1,100 chronically homeless people in North Carolina and over 200,000 nationwide.



Chronically homeless people use a greater amount of emergency resources particularly in shelters, emergency rooms, and hospitals each year than other population groups. However, studies show supportive housing and increased access to supportive services for mental health, substance abuse, and employment opportunities can prevent the need for emergency assistance.



Burr introduced the Services for Ending Long-Term Homelessness Act when he served in the U.S. House of Representatives. In the Senate, he introduced the Services to Prevent Veterans Homelessness legislation which was approved by the Veterans Affairs Committee last year. Today's bill provides supportive services to keep low-income veterans in permanent housing so they do not become homeless.



For more information go to https://www.burr.senate.gov



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