Gabriela Sandoval Requena
Senior Policy Analyst
Nearly 1 in 4 Americans experiencing family homelessness live in New York City, making it the epicenter of family homelessness in the United States. Domestic violence continues to be at the core of this crisis as the number one driver of family homelessness. While shelter will always be an important resource for victims of domestic violence, it should not be their only resource. The incoming City Council and new Mayoral administration must do more to end the cycle of trauma, starting with publicly committing to ending family homelessness.
Our 2022 policy recommendations can help put New York City on the path to effectively ending homelessness among survivors.
Our 2022 policy recommendations are:
- Capture the True Scope of Homelessness – New York City cannot solve a problem it fails to measure correctly. We need one homeless census that includes all individuals and families experiencing homelessness in our city on a given night, not just those in one shelter system.
- Expand Access to Homeless Set-Asides — The City requires developers who receive certain capital subsidies to set aside at least 15% of their units for homeless individuals and families, but those staying in domestic violence shelters cannot apply for any of these units.
- Open Up Supportive Housing to Homeless Domestic Violence Survivors — Domestic violence survivors and their children are virtually excluded from the city’s supportive housing program, blocking access to a much needed resource for the most vulnerable survivors.
- Increase Investment in Homelessness Prevention — The City should invest in time-limited aftercare for families who exit shelter for permanent housing to ensure their basic housing stability needs are met, and continue to provide rental subsidies to families fleeing their abuser with nowhere else to go but shelter.
Click here to watch the livestream recording of New Destiny’s Inaugural Symposium: Innovative Housing Solutions to Address the Homelessness Crisis for Domestic Violence Survivors
Our advocacy, often in collaboration with other organizations, has resulted in changes to regulations and additional resources for both domestic violence survivors in the homeless shelter system and those at-risk of becoming homeless.
New Destiny is a co-convener, along with Enterprise Community Partners and Citizen’s Committee for Children, of the Family Homelessness Coalition (FHC) which is comprised of human service providers, advocates, affordable and supportive housing developers, and New Yorkers who have experienced family homelessness firsthand. The FHC advocates for policies and resources that prioritize homeless families with children on the City’s homelessness agenda including recommendations and priorities for Fiscal Year 2023.