Governor Lamont Announces Release of Nearly $8.5 Million in Additional Resources To Connect Those Experiencing Homelessness With Support
New Regional Hubs Will Provide Enhanced Support for Those Seeking Housing Assistance
(HARTFORD, CT) – Governor Ned Lamont today announced that his administration is releasing nearly $8.5 million additional aid to connect those experiencing homelessness with support services – including housing, food, and mental health services – ahead of the upcoming winter season. The goal of the funding is to ensure that pathways to the homeless service system and human points of contact remain available for those seeking assistance.
- $5 million from the Connecticut Department of Housing to support seasonal shelters and services throughout the homeless service system during the winter;
- $2.5 million from the Connecticut Department of Housing to develop new hubs within each of the state’s seven regional Coordinated Access Networks that supports the hiring of more staff, ensuring flexible financial assistance is available, and technological upgrades can be supported;
- $500,000 from the Connecticut Department of Housing for the United Way of Connecticut to increase staffing at 2-1-1; and
- $475,000 from the Connecticut Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services for the United Way of Connecticut to support costs related to the complex needs of unsheltered individuals and families during periods of extreme cold weather.
The Connecticut Department of Housing is working with the seven regional Coordinated Access Networks on the development of these hubs, which will be able to accept walk-in appointments and receive direct referrals from 2-1-1 staff for those who indicate they are experiencing homelessness. The hubs will serve to provide support for repeat callers of 2-1-1, while helping to reduce overall call volume at the service.
Governor Lamont said, “Stable housing is critical for the development of a strong and safe community, and it is a moral imperative. Additionally, direct person-to-person contact is essential to adequately addressing the issue of homelessness. We have an obligation to ensure that everyone has access to a safe and stable place to call home.”
Connecticut Department of Housing Commissioner Seila Mosquera-Bruno said, “Working closely with the Coordinated Access Networks, the Department of Housing is following best practices by directly reaching out those in need where they are, working with individuals to build trust, and connecting them with housing and related wrap around services.”
Connecticut Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services Commissioner Nancy Navarretta said, “Access to regional hubs offering in-person assistance to individuals and families experiencing homelessness will be a great help when addressing complex needs. Being able to connect quickly to safe shelter and housing as well as behavioral health services and social supports is imperative for maintaining healthy Connecticut communities.”
Cathy Zall, executive director of the New London Homeless Hospitality Center speaking on behalf of the Eastern Coordinated Access Network, said, “The State of Connecticut is a leader in offering innovative, effective, and compassionate ways to address the challenge of homelessness – beginning when our neighbors first find themselves facing homelessness. Under the leadership of the Department of Housing, Connecticut has established a coordinated ‘front door’ to link people experiencing homelessness quickly with available supports. United Way 2-1-1 has served as the first step in this process for many years. Beginning in November, this ‘front door’ will be become even more effective as the Department of Housing increases its investment in community-based sites, referred to as hubs, managed by the state’s Coordinated Access Networks. These community-based hubs will work closely with 2-1-1, the Department of Housing, local social service providers, emergency responders, health care providers and others to ensure that individuals and families experiencing homelessness know where to turn for the supports they need to get back on the path to permanent housing as quickly as possible.”
Anyone who is experiencing homelessness or is at imminent risk of homelessness is strongly encouraged to call 2-1-1 to get connected to available resources.
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