Thursday, June 7, 2012

Good SF move promoting vets' housing vouchers

Nice plan here to house veterans through a campaign, helpfully drenched in patriotism, to persuade 50 San Francisco landlords to accept HUD's VASH housing vouchers for veterans with disabilities. This is the "Homes for Heroes" collaboration among city and federal officials, landlords' groups, and the veterans' advocacy group Swords to Plowshares.

Too often with housing vouchers, or anyway with the Section 8 family housing kind, tenants get left with too much of the burden -- and, sometimes, the rejection and humiliation -- of approaching landlords to persuade them to accept the vouchers at all. (In San Francisco, a sense of the family (not veterans') voucher housing experience is available from this guidance page for prospective renters at the SF Housing Authority. To be fair, tho, I haven't dealt directly with SFHA in some time, and my memory is that staff can be more helpful in person than the online site suggests.)

So anyway it's great to see recognition that the opening-contact part of the voucher rental process needs some help.

Another day we can talk about the frequently substantial heroism of low-income civilian parents. This is a start.

Throughout modern history, new social programs have begun with expressions of civic gratitude to returning veterans. If we can do something for veterans first, it's a great start toward doing something similar for a larger public.

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