Connecticut Receives $1.3 million in HUD Funding for Domestic Violence Housing Program

Thursday, January 30, 2020

Today the Connecticut Department of Housing (DOH) and Connecticut Coalition Against Domestic Violence (CCADV) announced $1.3 million in new funding from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). The funding will continue to support Connecticut’s successful Domestic Violence and Human Trafficking Rapid Rehousing Program. Last summer the program received an initial $1.7 million award from HUD, with the program total standing at $3 million as of July 2020.

“Connecticut has been a leader on issues pertaining to domestic and family violence and providing protections for survivors, and enhancing these services remains a priority,” Governor Ned Lamont said. “By collaborating with the incredible nonprofit partners we have in our state, including the Connecticut Coalition Against Domestic Violence, we are dedicated to ensuring that critical services are available. With practices like this in place, lives can be saved.”

“I’m extremely happy that we are able to continue our work in providing safe stable housing to survivors of domestic abuse. Many victims of domestic violence remain in their circumstances because, often times, they have nowhere else to go. With this new round of funding, we will continue to provide alternatives and ongoing support as they look towards a fresh start” said Seila Mosquera-Bruno, Commissioner of the Connecticut Department of Housing.

“This new funding will allow us to house more survivors and children attempting to flee abusive relationships with a specialized program that meets their unique long-term needs,” said Karen Jarmoc, chief executive officer, CCADV. “Traditional rapid rehousing funding has been available to families currently residing in homeless shelters, but what’s exciting about this program is its flexibility to support those fleeing domestic violence in a survivor-centered way. In the first four months of the program, 38% of referrals have come from community settings so that survivors and their children can move seamlessly from one apartment to another without having to go to shelter first.”

The program began accepting referrals in September 2019 with 59 referrals to date. Domestic violence and human trafficking advocates work with housing specialists to locate and secure safe housing. Housing specialists have worked diligently to build relationships and create a network of landlords that understand the unique challenges faced by survivors and are willing to provide housing opportunities despite issues such as bad credit, lack of income, or other barriers that often prevent domestic violence survivors from securing housing. The program goal is to house all referrals within 45 days. To date, the program has averaged 36 days to house referrals.

“We are excited by the strong start that this program has had and positive response we have received from survivors,” said Annie Stockton Sabrowski, director of housing advocacy, CCADV. “This survivor-centered rapid rehousing model has allowed survivors to achieve meaningful safety and stability. Not only can we house survivors and their children without them being in shelter first, but they can also be housed in a different region of the state from where they make their initial application. This flexibility is critical to meet the complex safety needs of survivors.”

Connecticut’s Domestic Violence and Human Trafficking Rapid Rehousing Program is funded by US HUD and administered by CT DOH. It is a systemic collaboration between domestic violence advocates, human trafficking advocates and housing providers that enhances survivor access to housing resources while providing trauma-informed, survivor-centered support services necessary to achieve financial and housing stability. Funding is used to assist eligible domestic violence and human trafficking survivors with security deposits and short-term rental subsidies while providing ongoing case management to connect them to other community supports.

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