HUD's Moving to Work Program is the Best Approach Available to Help Families in Public Housing Achieve Self-Sufficiency
June 27, 2013 -
The Department of Housing and Urban Development’s (HUD) Moving to Work program is the best approach available to help families in public housing achieve self-sufficiency, witnesses told the Housing and Insurance Subcommittee at a hearing yesterday.
Moving to Work is a demonstration program established in 1996 that provides public housing authorities with the opportunity to design and test innovative, local strategies aimed at helping residents find employment and become independent.
“HUD’s Moving to Work program is an important tool that allows flexibility in administering housing programs on a local, individualized manner. The Obama Administration has recognized the successes of the program and has publicly called for its ‘substantial expansion,’” said Subcommittee Vice Chairman Blaine Luetkemeyer (R-MO). “HUD has indicated that the program has seen a reduction in costs and yet an increase in the number of families served. Nevertheless, there are many more that are still waiting for assistance,” Luetkemeyer added.
Witnesses at yesterday's hearing also lauded the Moving to Work program because of its ability to provide needed reforms while reducing costs.
“Overall, Moving to Work can provide public housing authorities with the ability to remove policies and practices that are mundane, outdated, and in need of reform given our current funding situation. Moving to Work provides Public Housing Authorities with a more business-like model that enables public housing authorities to address the current local needs,” said Gene Reed, Executive Director of the Abilene (Texas) Housing Authority.
The Moving to Work program has three statuary goals:
- To reduce cost and achieve greater cost-effectiveness in federal expenditures;
- To encourage the heads of households with children to participate in job training, educational programs, or other programs to become economically self-sufficient; and
- To increase housing choices for low-income families.