Watch NLC’s Elisha Harig-Blaine discuss the important role of local public sector leadership in meeting the housing needs of veterans. He discusses successful initiatives in Eugene, Ore. and Glastonbury, Conn. This video was taken at the ULI Terwilliger Center for Housing’s annual conference, Housing Opportunity 2013, March 20-22 in Seattle, Wash.
The housing needs of veterans are not all the same. Some veterans require long-term supportive services. Other veterans have more moderate needs, while some can live independently. The variety of needs requires creative solutions blending public and private resources.
One way cities can assist veterans directly is by supporting the development of safe and accessible housing that meets their needs. To advance an understanding of specific steps cities can take, NLC has complied case studies to document best practices from cities across the country.
The successful transition home for a veteran happens for a variety of reasons. Spouses are supported as they look for work. Spouses and children are supported as they adjust to an absent family member now being present but changed by their time away. A veteran is connected to resources to help align their skills and experiences in the best manner possible to available jobs. A veteran is connected to an understanding network of people who know what it means to come home to a changed community as a different person. Successful reintegration is rarely about one thing, but an interlocking series of supports.
The types of supports that returning veterans and their families need take time to establish. Cities can play the vital role of leading the coordination of existing resources that can help returning veterans and their families.
NLC has compiled case studies to promote awareness of collaborative and holistic efforts in cities as pragmatic examples for others. These efforts ensure veterans and their families are stably housed while the necessary supports are identified and aligned with the unique needs.
To better understand the important lessons from these efforts, NLC has pulled together examples from six cities that can help others improve the lives of our veterans. This report compiles all of the examples into one easy to print document.