Photo Courtesy of Michael Appleton/Mayoral Photography Office
The mayor also touted past initiatives taken by his administration to prevent and address youth homelessness, including Marsha’s House in the Bronx, the first-ever DHS shelter for LGBTQ young people in the five boroughs.
By Forum Staff
The City will adopt new investments to help youth experiencing homelessness transition off the streets into shelter and from shelter into permanent housing, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced Friday.
According to the administration, through collaboration across multiple agencies, including the Department of Youth and Community Development, the Department for the Aging, and the Department of Social Services, youth experiencing homelessness will have access to an array of new resources, including a new mobile service that will help youth experiencing homelessness find and access relevant support. Hizzoner said he will also establish a senior advisor for Youth Homelessness responsible for overseeing the development, implementation, and expansion of the interagency initiatives.
The new resources include:
• The Department for the Aging for the first time will connect youth experiencing homelessness to housing opportunities through their Home Sharing program (program already operating, effective immediately);
• A new mobile service that will help homeless youth more easily find and access support. The design of the service will be informed by youth with lived experiences of homelessness in the five boroughs, developed through a human-centered design process led by the Mayor’s Office of Economic Opportunity, with $200,000 allocated for research, scoping, and design to begin this fall;
• A new cohort of pregnant or parenting youth participating in the outcome-driven Parent Empowerment Program through the Department of Youth and Community Development, which provides access to childcare to young parents while they pursue their high school equivalency diploma and earn workforce credentials.
According to de Blasio, his administration is:
• Piloting the provision of DSS prevention resources within a DYCD 24-hour drop-in center in Queens
• Working with DYCD to connect certain eligible young people transitioning out of DYCD shelters and entering Department of Homeless Services shelters with CityFHEPS rental assistance
• Bidding out a two-year contract through the Department of Social Services-Human Resources Administration to support the NYC Youth Action Board, which will integrate people with lived experience within the NYC Coalition on the Continuum of Care
• Ensuring that DYCD providers are trained by DSS-HRA in applying to NYC Supportive Housing units;
• Partnering with members of the NYC Youth Action Board, DYCD and homeless service providers so that HRA can update the assessment for Supportive Housing applications to include specific eligible experiences of young people; and
• Relaunching the Youth Experiencing Homelessness page on Generation NYC, co-designed by Mayor’s Office for Economic Opportunity with members of the NYC Youth Action Board, DYCD, and homeless service providers so that there is an online resource guide specific to youth experiencing homelessness (no cost, to launch this summer, the mayor noted).
On Friday, de Blasio also touted past initiatives taken by his administration to prevent and address youth homelessness, including the NYC Unity Project, a $9.5 million investment to prevent and address homelessness for LGBTQ youth across the five boroughs; 500 new beds for homeless youth and expansion of youth drop-in centers; Marsha’s House in the Bronx, the first-ever DHS shelter for LGBTQ young people in New York City; and the commitment to allocate 1,700 supportive housing units for youth through the Supportive Housing NYC 15/15 Initiative.