COHHIO, and other members of the Home Matters to Ohio coalition, called on the Ohio Senate this week to expand the Ohio Housing Trust Fund in the biennial budget (HB 166) currently under discussion in the Statehouse.
Advocacy Director Gina Wilt and Ohio CDC Association Executive Director Nate Coffman told senators that the Ohio Housing Trust Fund hasn’t seen an increase since 2003, when the fee was created.
“Unfortunately, as the need has increased, the number of state dollars available to serve these families has dramatically decreased,” Wilt said. (COHHIO Testimony)
“As you know, housing is fundamental to addressing so many other issues facing Ohio: infant mortality, opiate addiction, healthcare costs, lead poisoning, poor student performance, foster care, job absenteeism, and criminal justice. Research continues to grow and continues to reveal how access to affordable housing saves money and lives,” she added.
Over the past five years:
- Total homelessness in Ohio increased 20% to over 70,000
- Children’s homelessness increased 25% to nearly 21,000
- The number of homeless babies in Ohio increased 53% to nearly 3,000 infants under age 1
Several other members of the Home Matters to Ohio coalition submitted testimony in support of the Housing Trust Fund expansion amendment, including National Church Residences, Habitat for Humanity of Ohio, Enterprise Community Partners, Finance Fund, and NeighborWorks Collaborative of Ohio. All the testimony is available on the Senate Finance Committee’s website.
Please take a minute to contact your state senator and ask them to support an amendment to expand the Ohio Housing Trust Fund to make home a reality for more homeless veterans, children, seniors and people with disabilities. Click here to find your state senator.
For more information, visit our Housing Trust Fund page.