ElectionsVote

Congressman Darrell Issa (R-Vista) led a group of lawmakers in a letter to Secretary Ben Carson, expressing concern over the agency's housing policies that are putting a tough strain on homeless shelters here in California and across the nation.

In the letter, Congressman Issa is joined by fellow California Congressman Doug LaMalfa (R-CA), Chairman of the Republican Study Committee Mark Walker (R-NC), Chairman of the House Freedom Caucus Chairman Mark Meadows (R-NC), and 20 other members from across the nation.

Under the Obama-era policy known as "Housing First," some of the nation's most successful programs for alleviating homelessness are being forced to choose between walking away from as much as $95,000 in federal funding or abandoning the models they've developed -- and had real success using -- to help get homeless Americans back on their feet.

"This is one of the worst examples of Washington's we-know-better-than-you mentality and is just the kind of top-down mandates we need to be rid of," said Congressman Darrell Issa. "The Housing First approach may work for some, but it isn't - and can't be - the answer for all. This misguided policy has caused some of the most effective homeless assistance programs in our district to walk away from the funding they need to help families get back on their feet. At a time when homelessness in San Diego is among the highest in the nation and homeless rates here are still increasing, we should be doing all we can to empower more facilities, not less, to come together on this critical issue."

“I’ve seen, firsthand, successful shelters in my district lose funding as a result of the Housing First approach, severely hindering their ability to house hard-working families who truly want to escape the cycle of homelessness," said Congressman Doug LaMalfa. "This model hurts independent housing programs who operate on a basis of sobriety, work, and education – which should be common sense. I hope Secretary Carson will review these flawed procedures and help promote programs that will encourage accountability and long-term benefits for families in need.”