News Council sends letter to MA Congressional Delegation requesting more support for state’s shelter crisis

The Providers’ Council sent a letter to members of the Massachusetts Congressional Delegation today, urging them to ramp up their efforts in pressuring the Biden Administration to respond to the state’s shelter system crisis.

Click here to view the letter, which over 70 Council members signed onto in support.

Healey in August declared a state of emergency to address the state’s shelter system, delivering an “urgent and formal appeal” to the federal government for intervention and action, specifically to remove barriers and expedite federal work authorizations for migrants, as well as to help fund new shelters. 

Healey noted during her declaration that approximately 5,600 families were being housed in the state’s emergency shelter system, an 80% increase from 2022. Since then, state officials have reported that more than 6,000 families, including children and pregnant women, are now in emergency shelters — up from just 388 in January — and that number continues to rise with each passing day. 

In July, the Massachusetts Congressional Delegation – comprised of Senators Elizabeth Warren and Ed Markey and Representatives Richard Neal, James McGovern, Lori Trahan, Jake Auchincloss, Katherine Clark, Seth Moulton, Ayanna Pressley, Stephen Lynch and William Keating – sent a letter to the secretary of Homeland Security and the director of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services urging them to streamline work authorizations for new arrivals. 

In the time since, the situation has worsened to the point that Healey had to activate the National Guard in September to help overwhelmed human services workers deliver much-needed services to these families, such as providing them with food, helping them access medical care, securing transportation and enrolling their children in school.

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