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Lt. Gov. Visits Supportive Housing in Middletown

Lt. Gov. Visits Supportive Housing in Middletown

On July 19, Lieutenant Governor Nancy Wyman toured Middletown-based Liberty Commons, which provides permanent supportive housing for formerly homeless individuals. Like her boss, Governor Dannel Malloy, she is a strong champion of creating affordable housing and ending homelessness.

Wyman praised the progress housing advocates have made in reducing homelessness, but acknowledged that these gains are imperiled by the state’s budget difficulties.  “I’m hoping to see a continuation of what we’ve been doing,” Wyman said. “We can’t see an increase, so I would like to see flat funding rather than cuts — because we’re talking about people,” she said.

Liberty Bank Foundation, along with several other members of the Coalition on Housing and Homelessness, attended the tour to advocate for the continuation of state funding for solutions like Liberty Commons, which has had a long track record of success in providing chronically homeless folks with permanent shelter and the services they need.

A new approach to solving homelessness in the state has brought these developments in the last few years:

  • A statewide 2-1-1 telephone intake system for anyone experiencing housing problems saves money through better coordination and leads to better outcomes.
  • The saving of taxpayer dollars by moving people out of homelessness instead of leaving them stranded in the emergency services system.
  • State investment in affordable housing production has allowed more families to spend a more reasonable portion of their funds on shelter. However, there must be a continued commitment to this work, since outsized housing costs are the biggest root cause of homelessness in the state.

Thanks to our partners for turning out to help present important messages about progress and needed improvements —  The Connection, Inc., St. Vincent DePaul Middletown, the Coalition on Housing and Homelessness, and Commissioner Evonne Klein of the state Department of Housing, who has been a steadfast and indispensable partner since she took office.

Wyman suggested that everyone who is interested in seeing progress in housing the homeless contact their local representatives to urge the swift adoption of a budget that supports this vital work. We concur!

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