Four New Mayors Commit to End Veteran Homelessness

Bayonne, Harrison, Middle Twp. and West Orange
Commit to End Veteran Homelessness by 2015

Bayonne Mayor Jimmy DavisMayors James Davis of Bayonne, Lewis Mazo of Harrison Township, Tim Donohue of Middle Township, and Robert Parisi of West Orange, have committed to end Veteran homelessness by 2015.

The Mayors Challenge to End Veteran Homelessness aims to pool federal, state, and community resources to assist homeless Veterans in securing permanent housing and the services that will help them stay in their homes.

These four latest New Jersey mayors to sign on join 13 New Jersey mayors and more than 200 mayors and other elected officials across the country that are working to ensure that every U.S. Veteran has a place to call home.

The previous New Jersey mayors who signed on to the Mayors Challenge were:

  1. Mayor Stephen Fulop, Jersey City
  2. Mayor Dawn Zimmer, Hoboken
  3. Mayor Jose “Joey” Torres, Paterson
  4. Mayor John Ducey, Brick
  5. Mayor John E. McCormac,Woodbridge
  6. Mayor James Fife, Harrison
  7. Mayor Thomas Andes, Denville
  8. Mayor Thomas Lankey, Edison
  9. Mayor Janice Kovach, Clinton
  10. Mayor Don Guardian, Atlantic City
  11. Mayor Victor DeLuca, Maplewood
  12. Mayor Daniel J. Reiman, Carteret
  13. Village President Alex Torpey, South Orange

Mayor Robert Parisi“We need to let the brave veterans who have served our country know that they will never be forgotten. I am honored to join mayors from other New Jersey towns in this fight to end veteran homelessness.”

Said West Orange Mayor Parisi.

“We need to renew our commitment, at every level of government, to honoring the promises made to our Veterans. These brave men and women did not hesitate to answer the call to protect and defend country. We need to attack the many challenges facing our veterans with the same vigor and conviction. I’m proud to join Mayors across the country as we work toward the important goal of honoring the service of our veterans by making sure all of them have a home to call their own.”

Middle Mayor Tim DonohueSaid Middle Township Mayor Tim Donohue.

The Mayors Challenge is a White House initiative launched by First Lady Michelle Obama in June, bringing together the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs (VA), the U.S. Interagency Council on Homelessness (USCIH), and the National League of Cities.

Together, these federal agencies are working with local partners to strategically target resources like HUD-Veteran Affairs Supportive Housing (VASH) vouchers that fund housing and social services for Veterans. Other key resources include financial assistance and job training through local providers that receive federal funding from the federal Continuum of Care program.

“The brave men and women of the military, who have given so much to protect our lives and liberty, deserve to have a place they can call home. Through the Mayors Challenge, all levels of government are joining forces to make sure that they do.”

Said Holly Leicht, HUD Regional Administrator for New York and New Jersey.

“Together we can ensure that the men, women, and families that need this vital support will soon be in a stable home environment.”

Said Maria Maio-Messano, HUD New Jersey Field Office Director.

Lewis Mazo of Harrison TownshipLater this year, HUD anticipates awarding approximately 10,000 new HUD-VASH vouchers nationwide to build upon significant progress toward ending Veteran homelessness. Since 2008, more than 59,000 vouchers have been awarded, and 43,371 formerly homeless Veterans are currently in homes of their own thank to the HUD-VASH program. Rental assistance and support services provided through HUD-VASH are a critical resource for local communities in ending homelessness among our nation’s Veterans.

Since 2010, when the federal government launched Opening Doors, a strategic plan to prevent and end homelessness, there has been a 24 percent reduction in homelessness among Veterans. This reduction has been achieved through a partnership between the Obama Administration, local governments, non-profits, and the private sector. Through this final push, the goal of ending Veteran homelessness in America is within reach.

Click here resources for local Veterans experiencing homelessness

Click here for Information for Mayors and Staff

Click here for Information on the Mayors Challenge

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