Today, Mayor Tishaura O. Jones joined U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Secretary Marcia L. Fudge, who serves as chair of the U.S. Interagency Council on Homelessness (USICH), at a virtual event to launch House America: An All-Hands-On-Deck Effort to Address the Nation's Homelessness Crisis.
House America is a national partnership in which HUD and USICH invite mayors, county leaders, Tribal nation leaders, and governors to use the historic investments provided through the American Rescue Plan to address the crisis of homelessness through a Housing First approach by immediately re-housing and building additional housing for people experiencing homelessness.
"Making sure every St. Louisan has a safe and stable home is a top priority for my administration," said Mayor Jones. "I'm proud to join Secretary Fudge in the House America effort to ensure that the City of St. Louis leads the way in using American Rescue Plan resources to house people experiencing homelessness."
As part of the Mayor's commitment to housing America, the City of St. Louis is allocating over $40 million in American Rescue Plan funds towards emergency shelter, bridge housing, rapid rehousing, permanent supportive housing, tiny homes, home repair, wrap around services, safe haven, mortgage assistance, and more.
House America is the federal government's direct response to the crisis of homelessness, which was rising even before the arrival of the COVID-19 pandemic. In March, HUD released its 2020 Annual Homeless Assessment Report Part 1 to Congress, which found that more than 580,000 people experienced homelessness in the United States on a single night in January 2020, prior to the pandemic. COVID-19 has created greater urgency to address homelessness, given the heightened risks faced by people experiencing homelessness. At the same time, COVID-19 has slowed re-housing activities due to capacity issues and impacts on rental market vacancies.
Through the American Rescue Plan, the City of St. Louis received 160 emergency housing vouchers and $10 million in HOME Investment Partnerships grants to help more residents obtain the safety of a stable home.
As a member of House America, Mayor Jones will partner with HUD and USICH to use these American Rescue Plan resources to re-house households experiencing homelessness through a Housing First approach, and to add new units of affordable housing into the development pipeline by December 31, 2022.
To learn more about House America, visit: hud.gov/house_america.