Behavioral Health Services

Fighting for Families Newly Unhoused as a Result of COVID-19

4:44 PM

ALBUQUERQUE, NM – Bernalillo County and Albuquerque Public Schools (APS) Title I McKinney-Vento Program are collaboratively working with the community to support families in need and provide transitional housing in the form of a motel voucher. The vouchers are available to families who have recently become unhoused due to the current coronavirus (COVID-19) public health emergency. The collaboration will ensure that families have a safe place to stay while they work with APS established social workers to establish housing stability.

The pilot program will assist APS families with children who are newly unhoused, precariously housed, or temporarily displaced due to COVID-19. The program participants are referred by their school, who has an established working relationship with the family. Upon receipt of the referral, the Department of Behavioral Health Services will begin review, and the placement process will begin.

“As chairman of the supportive housing committee, I’m excited about this new motel voucher program. In these strange and complicated times, families can find themselves homeless. This collaboration with the Behavioral Health Initiative, APS Title 1, and the charter school community, creates a system of support. This support enables families to receive the social and emotional supports that lead to permanent housing,” said Robert Baade, chair of the Behavioral Health Initiative Steering Committee.

The families will receive a variety of services once they enter the program. The school-based social workers will continue to provide case management support to ensure families maintain and sustain housing, while students engage in educational opportunities provided by APS. This support includes assistance in seeking long-term housing, educational support, and case management services for the entire family.

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