Residents and staff from the Haven and Harbor attended a press conference at city hall last week to support continued funding for affordable housing. New York State Assembly Member Vito Lopez used the press conference to announce an initiative to create an “Empire State Housing Investment Fund.” Lopez requested $500 million in capital funding to be allotted in the 2010-2011budget and will introduce a bill to create the fund.
Representatives from Odyssey House were joined by a variety of housing advocacy groups in calling for support of the bill, including Habitat for Humanity, Community Access, the Real Rent Reform Campaign, Make the Road New York, the Interfaith Assembly on Homelessness & Housing, and St. Nicholas Neighborhood Preservation Corporation.
Housing services are a critical part of the Odyssey House family of services. Affordable housing is key to reducing the costly societal impact of substance abuse and chronic homelessness. These extra resources go a long way in preventing individuals who have achieved a sustainable level of sobriety from losing the gains they made in treatment and ending up on the streets, in city shelters, or the criminal justice system.