Whitmer and HUD unveil homeless aid from COVID-19 relief bill

Michigan

LANSING, Mich. (WOOD) — The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development is allocating $5 billion in homeless assistance as part of the American Rescue Plan, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer and federal officials announced.

Whitmer and HUD Secretary Marcia Fudge made the announcement about the funds from the latest COVID-19 relief bill during a virtual briefing Thursday.

Whitmer said that the relief plan, paired with President Joe Biden’s proposed American Jobs Plan, will “change lives and help millions of American families.”

The funds will be split between 651 grantees, including states and local governments. Fudge said that in January of 2020, around 580,000 people were homeless each night across the U.S., and that number has likely grown throughout the pandemic.

The money will be used to increase affordable housing and services for people who are homeless, like buying and converting hotels into short term housing or helping those who are fleeing from domestic violence.

“Housing is a right, not a privilege,” Whitmer said. “For people experiencing homelessness, this means a place to call home. “

Whitmer and Fudge were joined by Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, and the mayor of Birmingham, Alabama, Randall Woodfin.

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