U.S. Senator Sherrod Brown (D-OH) recently announced that the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) has awarded over $300,000 in grant funding to the Cuyahoga Metropolitan Housing Authority through its Family Unification Program (FUP). The funding will go toward the unification and preservation of child welfare-involved families that lack adequate housing, and the prevention and ending of homelessness among youth with a current or prior history of child welfare involvement.
Specifically, these awards provide needed housing assistance to:
Families for whom the lack of adequate housing is a primary factor in the imminent placement or discharge of the family’s child or children in out-of-home care,
Youth between ages of 18 and 24 who have left foster care, or will leave foster care within 90 days, and
Youth who are homeless or at risk of becoming homeless at age 16 or older.
This has been made possible through Congress's enactment of the Fostering Stable Housing Opportunities Act of 2020, which provides Family Unification Vouchers (FUP) to foster youth who are at risk of homelessness as they transition to adulthood. The bill also requires coordination between PHAs and Public Child Welfare Agencies to better connect youth to housing and services as they leave care. Brown worked in partnership with ACTION Ohio to ensure the voices and needs of young people and individuals with lived experiences were reflected in the legislation.