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Mayor Kasim Reed Announces the City of Atlanta has Effectively Ended Veteran Homelessness

Post Date:11/06/2017 12:04 PM

Mayor’s Office of Communications
55 Trinity Avenue, Suite 2500 • Atlanta, Georgia 30303

Anne Torres, Director
404-330-6423, office
404-904-2618, cell

Christina Cruz-Benton, Press Information Officer
404-546-1465, office
404-807-2438, cell


 FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: November 6, 2017

 News Release

Mayor Kasim Reed Announces the City of Atlanta has Effectively Ended Veteran Homelessness

ATLANTA – Mayor Kasim Reed today announced that the City of Atlanta has effectively ended veteran homelessness, confirmed recently by the United States Interagency Council on Homelessness (USICH), US Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), and the US Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). 

In 2014, Mayor Reed joined other Mayors across the United States in accepting President Obama’s challenge to end veteran homelessness by 2015. Since that time, Partners for HOME and the providers of the Atlanta Continuum of Care (CoC) in partnership with HUD, the VA and the Atlanta Housing Authority, have worked tirelessly to create a coordinated system to identify, assess, connect and permanently house veterans experiencing homelessness. To date, the CoC has placed 1,859 veterans experiencing homelessness into permanent housing. 

“Today’s announcement means that with the systems and resources we have in place, we can assist any homeless veteran in our city who becomes known to us find a home,” said Mayor Reed. “I want to express my sincere thanks to all of our partners and the providers who made this possible. It means so much to me to know that we have been able to help the women and men who risked it all in service to their country.”

The City of Atlanta is one of only two municipalities in the State of Georgia that has met the federal benchmarks and criteria for creating an effective end to homelessness for veterans. Meeting the criteria for each benchmark, set by USICH, means Atlanta has created a system and capacity to quickly identify and house veterans experiencing homelessness. 

"We applaud Mayor Reed and all the partners in Atlanta who collaborated to plan and execute the critical strategies we know can end homelessness in this country,” said Matthew Doherty, executive director of the U.S. Interagency Council on Homelessness. “Communities like Atlanta are proving that homelessness is solvable, not just for veterans, but for everyone.”

Effectively ending veterans homelessness in Atlanta is the result of a collective effort of service providers, housing authorities, local agency partners and the robust and tireless work of the philanthropic community. This federal designation is a recognition that the system and resources in place in Atlanta are working, but the CoC and partners understand that the effort must continue until all veterans are housed, and until homelessness in Atlanta is brief, rare and non-recurring.

"Ending veteran homelessness in the City of Atlanta is now a reality thanks to the combined efforts of Mayor Reed, the Atlanta Homeless Continuum of Care, key partners, HUD and the Veteran’s Administration," said HUD Southeast Regional Administrator Denise Cleveland-Leggett. "Our veterans deserve a place that they can finally call home where they have an opportunity to rebuild their lives after sacrificing so much on our behalf." 

The federal designation also recognizes that the City has maintained a robust continuum of outreach, services, emergency, and permanent housing placements to continue to identify veterans who may become homeless and immediately connect them to care and resources. 

“This work could not have been done and cannot be sustained without the substantial and continued investment from the VA and HUD,” said Cathryn Marchman, executive director, Partners for HOME. “This work is a road map for Atlanta to continue its cross-collaboration with our partner providers and federal, state and local entities, and to build upon this success to create an effective end to homelessness for everyone in our community.” 

Earlier this year, Mayor Reed announced that the Atlanta City Council voted to authorize Invest Atlanta to issue a $26 million Homeless Opportunity Bond to be matched by a $25 million philanthropic donation from the United Way of Greater Atlanta, for a $50 million total initiative to make homelessness rare, brief and non-recurring in the City of Atlanta. The Atlanta City Council also authorized the adoption of ClearPath – Partners for HOME’s five-year strategic plan focused on permanent housing placements for all individuals experiencing homelessness. 

The CoC conducted its annual point-in-time count in January 2017. Unlike other cities around the country experiencing spikes in homelessness, Atlanta continues to experience declines in overall homelessness.  Overall homelessness is down 21 percent since 2015. Since 2013, the CoC has seen a 61 percent decrease in the total number of chronically homeless individuals, a 52 percent decrease in unsheltered homeless individuals and a 62 percent decrease in the number of homeless veterans in Atlanta, according to the Regional Commission on Homelessness.

To see the letter from the USICH, click here: Confirmation_Atlanta_GA.


For more information about the City of Atlanta, please visit or watch City Channel 26. Follow the City of Atlanta on Facebook and Twitter @CityofAtlanta. Follow Mayor Reed on Facebook and Twitter @Kasim Reed

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