Housing & Homelessness:
Increase Access to Safe, Stable and Affordable Housing for all Children
Safe, stable, and affordable housing is essential to children’s well-being and success, and is a key social determinant of health. Housing instability, homelessness, and unsafe housing contribute to childhood trauma, ACEs, and negative outcomes. Increasing state investments in affordable housing, reducing homelessness, and improving the health and safety of rental housing are critical to improving children’s outcomes. The Alliance supports the Vermont Affordable Housing Coalition in securing substantial new funding for the Vermont Housing and Conservation Board, rental assistance and supportive services, and statewide housing code enforcement. The state’s chronic underfunding of housing needs means we must find equitable new revenue sources, like the proposed $2 motel/hotel occupancy fee.
- According to the annual 2019 Point-In-Time Count, 23% of Vermonters without secure housing were children.
- Last year the average length of shelter stay was 52 days, the longest in more than 18 years. Shelters report some guests staying for over a year simply because they cannot find safe, stable, and affordable housing, often even with a voucher.
- Strategic investments in housing, financial supports, and services help reduce and prevent homelessness; improve the lives of children, families, and vulnerable Vermonters; improve their physical and mental well-being; and improve their chances to succeed and live independent lives – all while building strong, healthy communities.