The purpose of this Snapshot is to give participants in the National Conference on Ending Homelessness an overview of key issues facing Congress this year, and how they will impact efforts to end homelessness. The Snapshot includes a description of budget deliberations, Issue Briefs on specific populations experiencing homelessness and how federal policy will affect them, and other important information about Congress and its role in ending homelessness.
Americans with the lowest incomes are facing increasingly desperate circumstances, particularly related to housing. Incomes at the bottom of the labor market remain stagnant despite the ongoing recovery, while rents for modest apartments are going up faster. Federal programs that have historically relieved inequality, particularly at HUD, have been scaled back. Congress needs to step up and enact bipartisan solutions that recognize and promote the dignity of each individual, or more homelessness is inevitable.
For Members of Congress to make good decisions about homelessness, it is crucial that they hear from people in their states and districts who are working on the issue. Advocacy with Congress is an essential part of ending homelessness. The staff of the National Alliance to End Homelessness hopes that this Snapshot and other materials on the Alliance’s website and available at the conference (some of which are listed at the end of this Snapshot) will be helpful to everyone doing this work.