Homelessness and Undocumented Families, Youth, and Survivors ...

Homelessness and Undocumented Families, Youth, and Survivors ...

HomeBase, Advancing Solutions to Homelessness HOUSING AND SERVING UNDOCUMENTED INDIVIDUALS AND FAMILIES Piper Ehlen, HomeBase National Alliance to End Homelessness 2017 Introduction Piper Ehlen Staff Attorney/Managing Director, Federal

Programs HomeBase, The Center for Common Concerns Non-profit based in San Francisco Advance policy solutions to homelessness Technical Assistance Provider Who is in the audience? HomeBase, Advancing Solutions to Homelessness Overview of Presentation

Citizen verification restrictions in federally assisted and subsidized housing HUD ESG and CoC Programs Section 8 and Public Housing Fair Housing HomeBase, Advancing Solutions to Homelessness Know Your Rights Many illegal immigrants dont know their

rights and fear deportation, thus making them susceptible to housing discrimination. HomeBase, Advancing Solutions to Homelessness Know Your Rights Undocumented households have rights to some housing programs that get federal funding and may be eligible for housing assistance from the federal government even if no one in the family is a citizen or has a green card. HomeBase, Advancing Solutions to Homelessness The Law

1) 2) Two laws govern noncitizen eligibility for housing programs: Title IV of the Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act of 1996 (PRWORA): CoC and ESG Programs Section 214 of the Housing and Community Development Act of 1980, as amended: Section 8 and Public Housing HomeBase, Advancing Solutions to Homelessness PRWORA

Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act of 1996 (PRWORA) (Welfare Reform) Restricts eligibility for federal public benefits to citizens and qualified aliens (8 U.S.C. 1611) HUD provided clarification about PRWORA and its homeless assistance programs in 2001 HUD updated its guidance in a Letter from the Attorney General and the Secretaries of HUD, DOJ, and HHS on August 5, 2016 https://

www.hudexchange.info/resources/documents/PR WORA-Fact-Sheet.pdf HomeBase, Advancing Solutions to Homelessness August 5, 2016 Guidance The purpose of this letter is to remind housing and service providers that they must not turn away immigrants experiencing homelessness or victims of domestic violence or human trafficking, on the basis of their immigration status, from certain housing and services necessary for life or safety such as street outreach, emergency shelter, and short-term housing assistance including transitional housing and rapid rehousing funded through the ESG and CoC Programs.

Not a new policy: reiterates existing laws and policies and applies those policies to programs that were not in effect when the original Attorney General Order was signed in 2001 HomeBase, Advancing Solutions to Homelessness The Law: PRWORA Exemptions The following are NOT subject to PRWORAs citizenship verification requirements: Programs that dont fall under definition of federal public benefit (we wont discuss today) Programs, specified by the Attorney General, that meet the following exceptions: Deliver

in-kind services at the community level; Do not condition the provision, amount, or cost of assistance on recipients income or resources; and Are necessary for the protection of life or safety Public benefits provided by nonprofit charitable organizations HomeBase, Advancing Solutions to Homelessness PRWORA in Relation to Nonprofits Provision of PRWORA exempts nonprofit charitable organizations from having to verify the eligibility of program participants. If nonprofits choose to adopt a policy

of verifying immigration status, then they must verify status for everyone in a non-discriminatory manner according HomeBase, Advancing Solutions to Homelessness PRWORA in Relation to Nonprofits Nonprofit administrators of HUDs homeless assistance programs are not required to verify their clients citizenship status. HomeBase, Advancing Solutions to Homelessness Nonprofits are not restricted

Even under the welfare reform law: Nonprofit charitable organizations are NOT REQUIRED to determine, verify, or otherwise ask for proof of an immigrants status HUD does not require a social security number to receive services (client can say dont know or refused for SSN in HMIS) If a nonprofit elects to verify citizenship or immigration status, they must follow the

procedures required by PRWORA and should consult with their legal counsel on how to comply. HomeBase, Advancing Solutions to Homelessness Dont Ask If You Dont Have To HomeBase, Advancing Solutions to Homelessness The Law: PRWORA Exemptions The following are NOT subject to PRWORAs citizenship verification requirements: Programs that dont fall under definition of federal public benefit Programs, specified by the Attorney General, that

meet the following exceptions: Deliver in-kind services at the community level; Do not condition the provision, amount, or cost of assistance on recipients income or resources; and Are necessary for the protection of life or safety Public benefits provided by nonprofit charitable organizations HomeBase, Advancing Solutions to Homelessness PROWRA and the ESG Program The following forms of assistance meet the exemption tests, so assistance can be provided without regard to immigration status:

Street Outreach Services Emergency Shelter Rapid Re-housing Assistance Why? They: Deliver in-kind services at the community level; Do not condition the provision, amount, or cost of assistance on recipients income or resources; and Are necessary for the protection of life or safety HomeBase, Advancing Solutions to Homelessness PROWRA and the CoC Program The following forms of assistance meet the exemption tests, so assistance can be provided without regard to immigration status:

Supportive Services Only, including Street Outreach Safe Haven Transitional Housing when the recipient or subrecipient owns or leases the building used to provide TH TH where RA is provided does NOT meet the exemption b/c RA is based on program participant income, therefore does not meet the 3-part test Rapid Re-housing Assistance HomeBase, Advancing Solutions to Homelessness CoC: Permanent Supportive Housing

PRWORA exception does NOT apply to CoC PSH PSH recipients or subrecipients that are state or local governments are required to comply with PRWORA; contact legal counsel PSH recipients or subrecipients that are nonprofit organizations are not required to, but may, verify an applicant's citizenship or immigration status If a nonprofit elects to verify citizenship or immigration status: must follow procedures required by the Act and should consult with legal counsel on how to comply HomeBase, Advancing Solutions to Homelessness

August 5, 2016 Guidance HUD, HHS, and DOJ have the authority to enforce these laws and may appropriately sanction recipients who disregard federal laws, regulations, or guidance that protect the rights of individuals to gain access to emergency shelter, transitional housing, or other services as outlined above on a nondiscriminatory basis. HomeBase, Advancing Solutions to Homelessness The Law: Section 214 Section 214 of the Housing and Community Development Act restricts eligibility for certain

housing programs to citizens and certain noncitizens Section 8 Housing Assistance/ Housing Choice Voucher Program Public Housing Section 235 (Home Ownership) and Section 236 Housing Rent Supplement Program Housing Development Grant Program (HoDAG) HomeBase, Advancing Solutions to Homelessness Section 214 Eligibility Requirements Categories of immigrants eligible for public housing and Section 8/ HCV US Citizens or Nationals Lawful Permanent Residents (Green Card Holders Permanent Resident Aliens) Refugees

Asylees An alien paroled into US Aliens whose deportation was deferred due to danger of persecution, post 1996 Victims of a severe form of trafficking HomeBase, Advancing Solutions to Homelessness Section 214: Not Eligible Categories of immigrants NOT eligible for public housing and Section 8/ HCV Non-immigrants (temporary residents): time-limited

visas to work, study, or travel Undocumented immigrants: entered as temporary residents and overstayed visa engaged in activities forbidden by visa entered without a visa Others: temporary administrative statuses (e.g. stay of deportation, voluntary departure) until they can formalize permanent status

paroled for less than one year under deportation procedures HomeBase, Advancing Solutions to Homelessness Public Housing and Section 8/HCV: Mixed Families NOTE: NOT all members of the household NOR the head of household NEED TO BE eligible for housing assistance If at least one member of a household is a US citizen or an eligible immigrant, the family can live in public housing or Section 8/HCV

Every applicant must declare in writing that he or she is a citizen, an eligible noncitizen, or is choosing not to provide documentation (and is therefore ineligible for assistance). Rent subsidy is pro-rated based on the number of eligible persons in the household HomeBase, Advancing Solutions to Homelessness Public Housing and Section 8: Mixed Families Family members who do not have eligible immigration status can be the head of household for purposes of:

income eligibility determination of rent entering into a lease, even though their occupancy is not being subsidized. HomeBase, Advancing Solutions to Homelessness Public Housing and Section 8: Mixed Families Public Housing Authorities do not have to verify immigration status each year for continued assistance

Only have to verify status if there is a new family member Citizenship evidence only one time A PHA may establish a preference for housing residents with eligible status HomeBase, Advancing Solutions to Homelessness Verification Does each member of the family have to provide a social security number?

HomeBase, Advancing Solutions to Homelessness Public Housing and Section 8: Verification Does each member of the family have to provide a social security number? NO! Only household members who claim to be a US citizen or "eligible immigrant" have to verify a valid Social Security Number.

Clients should not have to give a Social Security number to a program that does not verify citizenship or immigration status. HomeBase, Advancing Solutions to Homelessness Public Housing and Section 8: Verification Should a PHA evict a family that provided false citizenship documentation, or just recalculate the rent as a mixed family? As long as the family has at least one eligible member, it is up to the PHA to determine whether or not to terminate a family under these circumstances. A PHA certainly has the right to terminate assistance when a family knowingly provides false documentation At a minimum, the PHA would have to charge the family retroactive rent for the time period that the PHA provided full assistance to the family.

HomeBase, Advancing Solutions to Homelessness Fair Housing Act HUD's mission to promote nondiscrimination and ensure fair and equal housing opportunities for all. HUD is charged with implementing and enforcing a wide array of civil rights laws, not only for members of the public in search of fair housing, but for HUD funded grant recipients as well. HomeBase, Advancing Solutions to Homelessness

August 5, 2016 Guidance Organizations or agencies that receive federal funding must not discriminate against individuals on a basis prohibited by the Civil Rights Act, the Fair Housing Act, the Violence Against Women Act. Denying an individual a public benefit or treating an individual differently because of that individual's race or national origin would violate one or more of these statutes. For example, a recipient of federal financial assistance may not deny benefits to applicants because they have ethnic surnames or origins outside the United States. Nor may the

recipient single out individuals who look or sound "foreign" for closer scrutiny, or require them to provide additional documentation of citizenship or immigration status. HomeBase, Advancing Solutions to Homelessness Fair Housing Do undocumented residents have the same fair housing protections as citizens and legal immigrants? YES The Fair Housing Act prohibits housing discrimination of the seven protected classes

National Origin Regardless of any anti-immigration policies a community is attempting to enact, it is the responsibility of every housing provider to recognize the rights of the protected classes. HomeBase, Advancing Solutions to Homelessness Fair Housing Examples of illegal discrimination:

Not renting to a household because of immigration status Landlord charging a different price or asking for additional identification documents because of a persons national origin Lender offers different terms on a mortgage to a prospective homebuyer because of the homebuyers race, that is illegal discrimination regardless of immigration status. HomeBase, Advancing Solutions to Homelessness Fair Housing

The HUD Office for Civil Rights investigates complaints and monitors programs and services for compliance. Check with your local Fair Housing office For any program funded by HUD, please contact HUD's Housing Discrimination Hotline at 1-800-669-9777, TDD at 1-800-927-9275, or visit the website at https://portal.hud.gov/hudportal/HUD?src=/ program_offices/fair_housing_equal_opp/onlinecomplaint to report any violations of this directive HomeBase, Advancing Solutions to Homelessness

Questions? Piper Ehlen [email protected] HomeBase, Advancing Solutions to Homelessness

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