December 2019 Newsletter: 9 Notable Wins in 2019 | Policy Focus | Housing Counselor Dispatch | Affordable Homes for the Holidays | What We're Sharing | Learning & Networking | Jobs
9 Notable Wins in 2019
Each year, the Housing Action team works on a broad range of issues aligned with our core mission of creating an Illinois where everyone has a good, affordable place to call home. With 2020 around the corner, we're taking a moment to reflect on nine of our proudest accomplishments. From securing $200 million for affordable housing in Illinois' capital budget to storytelling for change, we've done a lot over the past year.
Just Housing Goes Into Effect in Cook County on December 31
The Just Housing Amendment will protect more than one million residents and their families by giving people with arrest and conviction records a fair chance at finding housing in Cook County. At the end of November, the Cook County Board of Commissioners approved final rules on how to implement the measure, clearing the way for it to take effect on December 31, 2019. The Just Housing Initiative, which Housing Action Illinois co-chairs with the Chicago Area Fair Housing Alliance, has worked for years to achieve this major step toward economic and racial justice for families.
Robert Marbut Confirmed as Head of U.S. Interagency Council on Homelessness
On December 10, Robert Marbut was confirmed as the new executive director of the U.S. Interagency Council on Homelessness. Housing Action joined many advocates, including the National Low Income Housing Coalition, to express serious concerns with this appointment, given Mr. Marbut's dehumanizing and ineffective approach to homelessness. Our thanks to Illinois Representatives Cheri Bustos, Dani Davis, Bill Foster, Jesus "Chuy" Garcia, Mike Quigley, Bobby Rush, and Jan Schakowsky for joining 75 House members who signed a letter to oppose the appointment. We will work with allies to oppose any policies that criminalize or displace those experiencing homelessness and will continue to push for proven solutions to homelessness such as Housing First.
Increased Funding for Affordable Housing in FY20 Spending Package
This week, House and Senate leaders reached a final deal to fund affordable housing and community development programs at HUD and USDA as part of a larger minibus package for Fiscal Year 2020. Overall, the spending bill provides HUD programs with more than $12 billion above the president’s request, clearly rejecting the administration’s calls to drastically cut housing benefits that help millions of low-income seniors, people with disabilities, families with children, veterans, and others afford their homes.
Online Study Group Registration Open for February Session
Are you ready to pass HUD's Individual Certification Exam? Housing Action's Capacity Building Specialist Wanda Collins is hosting another round of the Online Study Group this February to help you prepare. Each webinar-based module is dedicated to a different section of the exam, helping you gear up in a supportive, peer-learning environment.
Certified Counselors at 2019 Housing Action Conference
Affordable Homes for the Holidays
It’s been a busy year! We’re grateful for the successes we've had this year in our work to promote affordable housing and end homelessness—and we couldn’t have done it without your support. This holiday season, we hope you will consider making a gift to Housing Action Illinois and help support the movement for affordable housing in Illinois.
Together, we can make a difference—and we can't wait to see what we'll accomplish together next year.
It's recruitment season for Housing Action Illinois' AmeriCorps VISTA network! We have full-year VISTA positions open for candidates who want to serve their community at one of our member organizations.