By DANIEL SONNINSHINE
The United States Interagency Council on Homelessness, United States Department of Housing and Urban Development and United States Department of Veterans Affairs have recognized the New York cities of Buffalo, Niagara Falls, Lockport, and Tonawanda for reaching several federal line items of achievement for the housing of homeless veterans. Matters met by these cities include: (1) quickly identifying homeless veterans; (2) providing immediate shelter to veterans experiencing unsheltered homelessness who desire such shelter; and (3) once the veterans accept an offer of housing, the cities are able to house them within 90 days.
“Next month on Veterans Day, we’ll come together to pay homage to our service members and Veterans who courageously served our great nation and it’s our responsibility to ensure that once our veterans have served their nation, they have a safe place to call home,” proclaimed Buffalo Mayor Byron Brown. “Today, I’m honored to stand with the Mayors of Niagara Falls, Lockportand Tonawanda to report that homelessness among Veterans in our community has effectively ended. Thanks to a strong collaboration between government agencies, our community’s service and housing professionals who assist veterans and our many other partners, Buffalo has demonstrated that ending veteran homelessness is achievable. I congratulate everyone involved who worked tirelessly to give our veterans a dignified home, setting an example for communities across the nation. We owe our veterans our gratitude for their service and sacrifice to this nation and making sure they have a place to call home is a small but powerful way we can show our appreciation.”
Paul Dyster, Mayor of Niagara Falls stated, “The hard work and countless hours put forth through this coordinated effort over the course of the last several years were no small feat, but pale in comparison to the dedication and sacrifice our Veterans have made on behalf of our country. It is because of them that we are here today. Our veterans deserve a place to call their own, and it is our duty to do all within our power to provide them with that basic right. I commend my fellow Mayors, our partners in government and in the community for taking a stand and setting a national example to effectively end Veterans homelessness once and for all.”
Lockport Mayor Anne McCaffrey said, “We are so pleased that Lockport has achieved the distinction of ending homelessness among veterans. It takes dedicated community partners to ensure that resources are in place to help our veterans. Our communities are stronger because we’ve ensured adequate housing for our veterans.”
And Tonawanda Mayor Rick Davis added, “As a veteran this is something that I hold near and dear to my heart. We as a country need to do more for my brothers and sisters. Veteran homelessness should be a top priority for everyone and I’m honored to have answered the call for all our veterans.”
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