On February 4th, APAH participated in the 2020 Housing Lobby Day. Eight APAH staff and board members met with Virginia legislators in Richmond to advocate for increasing the Virginia Housing Trust Fund. Led by the Virginia Housing Alliance (VHA), APAH joined a statewide coalition of over fifty other individuals, nonprofits and stakeholders. We spent the day with fellow partners Alliance for Housing Solutions (AHS), Campaign for Housing and Civic Engagement (CHACE), and Northern Virginia Affordable Housing Alliance (NVAHA). The Housing Trust Fund is an important resource that funds affordable housing development and services for households in permanent supportive housing.
Advocates also encouraged legislators to end discriminatory housing practices such as refusing housing on the basis gender identity and households that use rental subsidies. These practices, which disproportionately hurt female-headed households, minorities, and very low-income populations, harm members of the LGBTQ+ community and households that use housing vouchers.
Since Housing Lobby Day, these issues have progressed through various committee discussions and votes. We are hopeful that legislators will recognize affordable housing as a statewide, non-partisan issue in Virginia, especially after our meetings.
We are so appreciative of VHA for organizing a productive day in support of affordable housing!