The Emergency Housing Assistance for Older Adults Act provides $1.2 billion to ensure that federally-assisted senior housing facilities have the necessary resources to effectively protect residents during the COVID-19 pandemic
WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) joined Senator Bob Menendez (D-NJ), a senior member of the Senate Banking Committee and Ranking Member of the Subcommittee on Housing, Transportation, and Community Development, to introduce the Emergency Housing Assistance for Older Adults Act that would provide $1.2 billion in funding to ensure that senior housing facilities have the necessary resources to effectively protect residents during the COVID-19 pandemic.
“All Americans deserve safety and dignity in their senior years. The moral test of any nation is how it treats its most vulnerable citizens—and that has never been more important than right now during this crisis,” Klobuchar said. “This legislation will help improve senior housing facilities and protect our seniors’ health as well as their mental, emotional, and financial well-being.”
“As the coronavirus pandemic continues to take its toll on our communities and families, it has had a relentless, devastating impact on our nation’s seniors, especially elderly Americans living in facilities that struggled with lack of protection, staff and resources,” said Menendez. “Congress has an obligation to help our most vulnerable during this crisis and that means making sure our federally-assisted senior housing facilities have the necessary resources to effectively protect and ensure residents remain safe, healthy and have access to key services during the COVID crisis.”
In addition to Klobuchar and Menendez, the legislation is cosponsored by Senators Cory Booker (D-NJ), Sherrod Brown (D-OH), Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), Chris Van Hollen (D-MD), Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), Bernie Sanders (I-VT), Bob Casey (D-PA), Ed Markey (D-MA), Richard Durbin (D-IL), Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) and Ron Wyden (D-OR).
The Emergency Housing Assistance for Older Adults Act provides $1.2 billion to the Section 202 Supportive Housing for the Elderly and Section 8 Project-Based Rental Assistance programs, including $845 million for obtaining protective equipment, cleaning and disinfecting properties, hiring additional staff and providing rental assistance.
The bill also includes:
· $50 million to install Wi-Fi services in senior housing communities;
· $7 million to extend the Integrated Wellness in Supportive Housing (IWISH) program for one year; and
· $300 million to expand service coordination.
The legislation is endorsed by AARP.
The text of the Emergency Housing Assistance for Older Adults Act can be downloaded HERE.