Washington, D.C. — U.S. Senators Charles E. Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand today announced $1,283,497 in federal funding to the Gay Men’s Health Crisis, Inc. (GMHC) in New York City. The funding was allocated through the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) under the Violence Against Women Act and Housing Opportunities for Persons With AIDS (VAWA/HOPWA). The GMHC will receive $1,085,977 through HOPWA and another $197,520 through the transitional Housing Assistance Program. Funds will provide housing placement assistance and short-term rental assistance to 15 households per year and short term rent, mortgage, and utility assistance to 8 households per year in New York City.
“We need to send an unequivocal message that domestic violence is a problem that continues to plague our communities. Victims of abuse should never have to think twice about whether or not to report their abusers and should always have a place to go. This federal funding will help Gay Men’s Health Crisis, Inc. provide transitional housing and services for LGBT victims of domestic violence in the New York City area,” said Senator Schumer.
“This critical federal funding will help GMHC facilitate a wide range of programs to better assist domestic violence survivors within the LGBT community, particularly those living with HIV and AIDS,” said Senator Gillibrand. “By increasing accessibility to housing services for survivors, we can help provide the support and resources they need to be protected. We need to make sure all domestic violence victims have a safe place to put their lives back together, and I will continue urging all of my colleagues in the Senate to support programs like this.”
“In GMHC’s thirty-four years serving people living with and affected by HIV and AIDS, we have seen the effects of domestic violence on this community and the challenges they face getting care and staying safe. This is why I am so proud to partner with AVP to launch the Safety in Housing program to make sure survivors can access the safe housing, mental health care, and HIV support they need to rebuild their lives and families. Violence has a lasting impact on survivors and family members, and also on our efforts to end the epidemic in New York. This is why we are grateful for leaders like U.S. Senators Schumer and Gillibrand who were instrumental in delivering these critical funds to New York State. Without partnerships with our elected officials and government agencies like HUD and DOJ, GMHC would not be able to serve the 10,000 New Yorkers we reach each year,” said GMHC CEO Kelsey Louie.
HUD will provide funding for housing assistance and supportive services to low-income persons living with HIV/AIDS who are victims of sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence, or stalking. Additional support services will be provided by GMHC and The New York City Anti-Violence Project that will focus on improving beneficiary health and safety, increasing access to employment/income, improving HIV treatment adherence, and successful transitions to permanent housing.
GMHC will also launch the Safety In Housing (SIH) planning workgroup with HIV/AIDS housing and service providers and domestic violence centers to coordinate screening processes and referral systems and identify needs and service gaps.