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Obama Signs Homelessness Legislation into Law

The Homeless Emergency Assistance and Rapid Transition to Housing Act focuses on getting families back into homes as soon as possible.

On May 20, President Obama signed the Homeless Emergency Assistance and Rapid Transition to Housing (HEARTH) Act into law, as an amendment to mortgage foreclosure legislation (S. 896). The HEARTH Act aims to:

  • Help reduce the amount of time families experience homelessness by using rapid re-housing programs that help them move quickly into permanent housing and provide services to ensure stability;
  • Ensure that families with the greatest hardships aren't left behind, by establishing a federal goal that no family should be homeless for more than 30 days; and
  • Prevent family separation by prohibiting shelters, transitional housing programs, and permanent supportive housing programs from discriminating against homeless families based on the age of their children. 

PI-GRO worked with the APA Task Force on Psychology's Contribution to End Homelessness, led by APA President James Bray, PhD to promote policies which address the mental health effects of homelessness.