Vouchers for vets
Washington state received 183 additional rental vouchers to help homeless veterans, according to an announcement from the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).
The Veterans Affairs Supportive Housing (VASH) program distributed the new vouchers to housing authorities throughout the state, including 69 new vouchers in Seattle and King County. The annual homeless census in King County found 921 veterans experiencing homelessness in January 2018. That figure represents a 31 percent decrease from the previous year.
VASH vouchers are a combination of traditional Housing Choice Vouchers — formerly Section 8 vouchers — that cover a portion of the recipient’s rent and services provided by the Department of Veterans Affairs, according to the HUD website. Those services can include things like case management and clinical care and are provided through VA medical Centers and community-based outreach clinics.
Veterans are disproportionately likely to experience homelessness when compared to the general population. According to a June 2018 report from the U.S. Interagency Council on Homelessness, veterans may be more at risk for homelessness for conditions they experienced before, during and after service. These include poverty, unemployment, trauma and mental health conditions such as post-traumatic stress disorder and substance abuse issues.
King County voters passed the Veterans, Seniors & Human Services levy in 2017 to help support veterans by connecting them to affordable housing, job training and behavioral health treatment.
From judge to Justice
The United States Senate voted 50 to 48 Saturday to make accused sexual assaulter Brett Kavanaugh the newest associate justice in the nation’s highest court.
The vote followed a grueling confirmation process in which the first of four women to accuse Kavanaugh of sexual violence, Dr. Christine Blasey Ford, testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee for several hours. Ford was later mocked by the president at a rally. She and her family have been forced out of their home due to death threats.
Kavanaugh also testified that day. In prepared remarks, he lashed out at Senate Democrats and promised “what goes around, comes around.” His testimony was partisan and delivered in speech that veered between anger and tears. Former Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens pulled his support from the nominee and the American Bar Association reopened its evaluation of Kavanaugh because of his “temperament.”
Kavanaugh replaces Justice Anthony Kennedy, for whom he once clerked. Kennedy has cast the swing vote for decades, siding with conservative jurists in many cases but holding firm for LGBTQ rights and landmark abortion-rights cases.
Ashley Archibald is a Staff Reporter covering local government, policy and equity. Have a story idea? She can be can reached at ashleya (at) realchangenews (dot) org. Follow Ashley on Twitter @AshleyA_RC
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