Over the past 6 months, many have made great efforts to encourage the New Jersey legislature to include in the 2016 state budget new rental vouchers for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities, who have serious mental illness or who are chronically homeless.
The individual efforts of signing the online petition, making calls, visits and writing letters to the editor have launched this drive giving the Supportive Housing Association of New Jersey (SHA) a strong advocacy base going forward.
According to SHA:
Fortunately the legislature kept intact the 200 vouchers for people with intellectual/developmental disabilities thanks to vigorous advocacy by the Arc of NJ and many families.
Additionally, Commissioner Chuck Richman of the Department of Community Affairs recently issued proposals for project based vouchers to providers for 100 homeless veterans and for 300 low-income households including disabled households.
However, the Opening 1,000 Doors campaign was not successful in convincing the New Jersey legislature to add tenant-based vouchers to the budget for Fiscal Year 2016. The Campaign began because of an affordable housing crisis in which many live with disabilities on very low incomes and are unable to find a safe, decent place to live because rents are too high.
This affordable housing crisis continues – and grows. The Campaign’s plea for more rental assistance will now continue – and grow.
To date, over 2,000 people have signed on to the Campaign. The Campaign now brings its voices directly to Governor Christie and Lieutenant Governor Guadagno in the hope that they will in the months ahead include more rental vouchers in the proposed Fiscal Year 2017 budget.
In the interim please sign on to the Opening 1,000 Doors campaign if you have not already done so and encourage your colleagues, friends and families to do the same.
Click here to sign on to the Opening 1,000 Doors Campaign.