Today, the Congressional Homelessness Caucus, Co-Chaired by Representatives Alcee L. Hastings (D-FL) and Eddie Bernice Johnson (D-TX), hosted a briefing on Chronic Homelessness and Mental Health. The Congressional Homelessness Caucus was joined by representatives of the National Alliance to End Homelessness, National Alliance on Mental Illness, and New Hope Housing, Inc.
“It was an honor working with Congresswoman Eddie Bernice Johnson, and our distinguished panelists to put on the first Congressional Homelessness Caucus briefing of the year on Chronic Homelessness and Mental Health,” said Congressman Hastings.
“Homelessness is still a serious problem in the United States and mental illness affects a significant proportion of this population. There is a pressing need to further evaluate these overlapping issues and use effective, understanding, and humane ways to bridge the gap. It is clear that mental health programs should provide plans for both treatment and housing. Allowing men, women, and children to live on the streets is not a standard America should be willing to accept, and we must work together to advocate for those who so often cannot advocate for themselves. I want to thank the National Alliance to End Homelessness, National Alliance on Mental Illness, and New Hope Housing, Inc. for their dedication to this issue, and will continue to work with my Co-Chair and Members of the Congressional Homelessness Caucus along with my colleagues to prioritize efforts to end homelessness once and for all.”
"I was pleased to work with my colleague Congressman Hastings to host this critical briefing on the intersection of chronic homelessness and mental illness. It is important that we support the most vulnerable members of our society, as Texas has over three thousand individuals experiencing chronic homelessness on any given day,” said Congresswoman Eddie Bernice Johnson.
“The testimonies from our witnesses on national policies and best practices show their admirable commitment to sustainably address the behavioral health needs for individuals experiencing homelessness in America. I thank Congressman Hastings and the participating organizations for working on this issue with me.”
Congressman Alcee L. Hastings serves as Vice-Chairman of the House Rules Committee, Chairman of the U.S. Helsinki Commission, and Co-Chairman of the Florida Delegation.