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October 12, 2016


The Intersection between Race and Homelessness

A recent report by CFED and the Institute for Policy Studies found that white households own, on average, seven times as much wealth as African-American households (and six times as much as Latino ones) and that at current growth rates, it would take black Americans two hundred and twenty-eight years to have as much wealth as white Americans have today.

From the report: “While these centuries-old problems are once again at the forefront today, much of the recent media and political attention has focused on how structural inequities manifest in the criminal justice system. But confining conversations around racial inequality to criminal justice alone ignores the fact that households of color are also simultaneously facing a slew of economic inequities that exacerbate the social disparities they face.”

Some of the reasons for these deep disparities are clear: the unemployment rate for African Americans is roughly twice that of whites, and African Americans earn, on average, between twelve and twenty-two per cent less than white people with similar education and experience. But the wealth gap between black and white Americans is much bigger than the income gap, thanks to a toxic combination of institutionalized discrimination, persistent racism, and policies that amplify inequality.

Although discrimination is no longer legal, it is still pervasive, especially as it relates to housing. Only forty-one per cent of African Americans own their homes, compared with seventy-one per cent of whites. The mortgage-interest and other real-estate tax deductions cost the government over 130 billion dollars a year, more than seventy per cent of which goes to the top twenty per cent of Americans. These funds could be integral in addressing the housing crisis our country is facing and the racial inequity that has caused much of the disproportionality we see. 

Rapid Re-Housing Works


In September the National Alliance to End Homelessness convened nearly 100 rapid re-housing champions from around the country, including King County, to develop a common vision about how we can advance rapid re-housing and discuss emerging knowledge, research and practice on the model. At the Summit, NAEH heard resoundingly that rapid re-housing continues to be a primary solution for ending homelessness and the intervention effectively gets households into permanent housing and keeps them there.

While we know rapid re-housing is increasing in places around the country, there is a need to scale up the intervention in a coordinated manner and at the systems level in order to truly address homelessness on a broader scale. To that end, the National Alliance to End Homelessness is launching Rapid Re-Housing Works, a campaign to help communities focus on the fundamentals of rapid re-housing and think about new ways to adopt and implement the intervention. Each week they will release dozens of exciting new tools, resources and thought pieces for use in our community. 

To start the discussion, NAEH is asking communities to let them know what the most important things needed to ramp up rapid re-housing are through a survey. 

A Way Home Washington

A Way Home Washington is pleased to announce that Jim Theofelis has started as Executive Director. Jim brings an unparalleled career of advocating for young people experiencing homelessness and foster youth to this work. He is exactly the type of visionary, translational leader that this coalition needs to meet the goal of ending youth homelessness in Washington State by the year 2020. 

“We feel confident that he can help us seize on the tremendous opportunity our community has to address this issue head-on,” said Sheila Babb Anderson, Homelessness Program Director at the Campion Advocacy Fund. “We now have all of the pieces in place that we know will lead us to success—renewed government leadership, committed philanthropic partners, a strong advocacy community, dedicated service providers, and growing community awareness.”  

King County Landlord Liaison Project RFP- Deadline Extended

The deadline for King County’s Department of Community and Human Services (DCHS) Landlord Liason Project Request for Proposals (RFP) has been extended to November 1. To review updates or download a copy of this RFP, visit the King County Procurement website.

Source of Income Discrimination Public Meetings

The Seattle Office for Civil Rights is developing administrative rules pertaining to the Source of Income Ordinance, legislation that expands fair housing protections based on their source of income to all renters and creates new requirements for landlords.  This includes the new 'first in time' provision that requires landlords to offer tenancy to the first applicant who meets all the screening criteria necessary for approval. They will host the following public meetings:

Public Meeting #1: Thursday, October 27th at 6pm at New Holly Gathering Hall, 7054 32nd Ave South, Seattle WA 98118. This meeting is an opportunity to learn about ordinance requirements, ask questions and raise areas that are unclear and that may require administrative rules.

Public Meeting #2: Thursday, November 17th at 7pm at the Bitter Lake Community Center, 13035 Linden Ave N, Seattle, WA 98133. This meeting will be another opportunity to learn about ordinance requirements, ask questions and to review the proposed administrative rules. This meeting is an opportunity to provide in-person or written public comment on the proposed rules.

Childcare and language interpretation will be provided at each meeting. To request an accommodation or language interpretation, please call (206) 684-4514. Space is limited.  Please register for your preferred meeting date here.  

Town Talk: The Face of Homelessness on the Eastside

Join LifeWire and the City of Redmond to learn more about the intersection between homelessness and domestic violence and how you can be a part of the solution on Tuesday, October 18 from 6:00-7:30 PM at the Redmond Public Library (15990 NE 85th St.). 

Sleepless in Seattle’s 3rd Annual Big Give

Sleepless in Seattle is raising money to provide 4,000 people on the streets of Seattle and King County with a sleeping bag, sleeping mat, and winter care packages this winter through a crowdsourcing campaign. Their Big Give event will be held on Saturday, November 19 from 2:00-8:00 PM at six different locations around King County where 360 volunteers will spread throughout King County to meet, serve, and befriend the homeless community. 

YMCA Young Adult Services Job Opportunity

The Independent Living Program at YMCA is hiring for a Resource Specialist position. This is a great opportunity to be a part of a team that is highly committed to working with young adults 15-21 who are aging out of the foster care system. The YMCA helps youth and young adults get connected to housing, employment and education, and helps them build on other life skills with the goal of living stable, healthy and productive lives. To apply click here.