Harrisburg, PA - Governor Tom Wolf and Brigadier General Anthony Carrelli, acting adjutant general with the Pennsylvania Department of Military and Veterans Affairs (DMVA), today announced that Pennsylvania exceeded its 100-day goal with 629 homeless veterans in Pennsylvania were placed in permanent housing between Sept. 23 and Dec. 31, 2015 as part of the Governor’s challenge to significantly reduce veteran homelessness. The 100-day challenge was announced on Sept. 22 with a goal of serving 550 homeless veterans by the end of 2015.
The commonwealth’s efforts continued in 2016 with 243 veterans being placed in housing in January, bringing the total to nearly 900 homeless veterans served from the end of September until the end of January. Numbers for February 2016 are still being tabulated.
“I am extremely proud of the commonwealth agencies, local governments and community partners who have banded together to identify and provide homeless veterans with stable housing and access to the programs and services that will help them rebuild their lives,” said Governor Wolf. “While we exceeded our goal, we know that there are still many homeless veterans on our streets and we remain committed to reaching out to these brave men and women who served our country.”
The commonwealth along with local officials, community housing and homeless service providers, federal agencies, and corporate and philanthropic organizations are committed to effectively ending veteran homelessness; this means having the programs and systems in place so that future homeless episodes will be rare, brief and non-recurring.
“Over the past several months it’s been exciting to see that the city of Lancaster/Lancaster County, Philadelphia and Reading/Berks County have formally announced they have the systems in place to successfully meet the needs of homeless veterans in their areas,” said Gen. Carrelli. “It’s also been rewarding for the Department of Military and Veterans Affairs to coordinate and rally the efforts of all of the stakeholders in this effort and we will continue to advocate for Pennsylvania’s homeless veterans.”
General Carrelli will be available for media interviews today following his testimony in front of the House Appropriations Committee at 11:00am
The challenge, officially known as the Mayors Challenge to End Veteran Homelessness, is an initiative of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) that was launched in June 2014. It was conceived as a means for local leaders to create and coordinate strategies to curb veteran homelessness. In early 2015, HUD conducted a point-in-time count which identified approximately 1,400 homeless veterans in Pennsylvania. Across the United States, 859 mayors, governors and county executives are currently participating in the challenge. For more information about the challenge, visit the Mayors Challenge to End Veteran Homelessness.
To read Governor Wolf’s September 22 proclamation, click here. To keep up to date on programs and services benefitting Pennsylvania veterans, follow DMVA on Facebook orTwitter.
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