On Friday, August 7, U.S. Representatives John Yarmuth (D-KY), Don Bacon (R-NE), Danny K. Davis (D-IL), and Don Young (R-AK) introduced the bipartisan Emergency Family Stabilization Act, H.R. 7950 (EFSA).
This legislation is the companion bill to S. 3923, which was introduced in the U.S. Senate on June 10 by U.S. Senators Lisa Murkowski (R-AK), Joe Manchin (D-WV), Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ), and Susan Collins (R-ME). This legislation provides flexible funding directly to community-based organizations to meet the needs of children, families, and unaccompanied youth who are experiencing homelessness during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The House version of EFSA contains the following additions:
- Provides $2 billion in flexible funding directly to community agencies (including local educational agencies) to respond to the emergency needs of children, youth, and families experiencing homelessness in the wake of the coronavirus, using the broader definition of homelessness. (The Senate bill provides $800 million.)
- Ensures that at least one agency in each state receives a grant.
- Provides that in awarding grants, special consideration is given to meeting the needs of pregnant women, pregnant and parenting youth, children under age 6, children with disabilities, families experiencing domestic violence, survivors of sexual assault or human trafficking, LGBTQIA individuals, and racial and ethnic minority populations.
- Requires the agency that administers the funds – the Administration of Children and Families (ACF) at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) — to submit a Report to Congress summarizing data gathered from grantees.
The Emergency Family Stabilization Fund includes set asides for tribes, and urban, rural, and suburban areas. Funds may be used for a wide range of housing, health, education, and safety-related activities.
Children, youth, and families experiencing homelessness have been largely left out of previous coronavirus legislation – yet they are at high risk of transmission, illness, and other harms. EFSA fills the gap by providing flexible emergency funding to the agencies that are closest to children, youth, and families. Helping children, youth, and families through the systems to which they are most connected will stabilize them quicker and more effectively, and prevent long-term homelessness.
Why is EFSA Needed?
- Even prior to COVID-19, youth and family homelessness were at record levels. The current economic crisis and family stress are creating new waves of youth and family homelessness.
- Families and youth experiencing homelessness are at great risk of coronavirus transmission, infection, and illness — as well as predation, violence, and trafficking. The coronavirus outbreak has created even more barriers to their survival, and to accessing the programs and services they need to regain their footing. Now more than ever, these children and youth need our attention.
- While previous coronavirus relief legislation included some funding related to homelessness, many children and youth experiencing homelessness are not eligible for it, because they are not eligible for most services provided by HUD’s Emergency Solutions Grant (ESG), and have additional needs that the ESG program does not meet. Dedicated funding is needed for the programs and systems that are uniquely positioned to help children, youth, and families immediately, and ensure their long-term stability.
What does EFSA Do?
- EFSA creates a new emergency funding stream through the Administration for Children and Families (ACF) within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, to provide flexible funding for community-based organizations to meet the unique needs of children, youth, and families experiencing homelessness (as defined by the education subtitle of the McKinney-Vento Act) in the wake of the coronavirus.
- Local agencies that currently receive ACF grants or have experience in serving children, families, and unaccompanied youth experiencing homelessness would be eligible to receive funds, including local educational agencies, and community-based, faith-based, and culturally-specific organizations.
- Special consideration is given to pregnant women, pregnant and parenting youth, children under age 6, children with disabilities, families experiencing domestic violence, survivors of sexual assault or human trafficking, historically marginalized and underserved communities of color, and families and youth in rural areas.
- Funds may be used for a wide range of housing, health, education, and safety-related activities.
Please take action today to ensure that prolonged child and youth homelessness does not result from the COVID-19 outbreak.
1. Tell your U.S. Senators and U.S. Representatives to insist that the Emergency Family Stabilization Act be included in the next coronavirus relief package. Use this action form to enter your zip code, and send a letter.
NOTE: If you have existing relationships with your Member of Congress or their staff, please reach out directly.
2. Endorse the legislation (local, state, or national organizations) by completing this google form.
3. Share on social media. (See below)
- Two-page fact sheet on the Emergency Family Stabilization Act (EFSA)
- [Senate Bill] Section-by-section summary
- [House Bill] Section-by-section summary
- Text of the House legislation
- Text of the Senate legislation
- Dear Colleague Letters in support of EFSA (House letter and Senate letter)
Endorsing National Organizations
Alliance for Excellent Education
Alliance to End Slavery and Trafficking – ATEST
American Academy of Pediatrics
American Dance Therapy Association
American Federation of School Administrators
American School Counselor Association
CenterLink: The Community of LGBT Centers
Changing the Narratives
Children’s Advocacy Institute
Child Welfare League of America
Coalition for Juvenile Justice
Council of Administrators of Special Education
Covenant House International
Educare Learning Network
First Focus Campaign for Children
Forum for Youth Investment
Futures Without Violence
Justice for Families
National Alliance to End Homelessness
National Association for the Education of Homeless Children and Youth
National Association of Counsel for Children
National Association of Elementary School Principals
National Association of School Psychologists
National Association of Social Workers
National Association of Secondary School Principals
National Coalition for the Homeless
National Congress of American Indians
National Council of Urban Indian Health
National Center for Housing & Child Welfare
National Indian Child Welfare Association
National Indigenous Women’s Resource Center
National Network for Youth
National Prevention Science Coalition to Improve Lives
National Safe Place Network
Parents as Teachers
School Social Work Association of America
StandUp for Kids
Strategies for Youth
The Ounce of Prevention Fund
Youth Advocate Programs, Inc.
Endorsing Organizations by State
Alaska Children’s Trust
Alaska Behavioral Health Association (ABHA)
Alaska Native Women’s Resource Center
American Association of Pediatrics – Alaska Chapter
Anchorage Coalition to End Homelessness
Asthma and Allergy Foundation of American – Alaska Chapter
Bethel Community Services Foundation
Best Beginnings Alaska
Big Brothers Big Sisters of Alaska
Camp Fire Alaska
Catholic Social Services
Covenant House Alaska
Volunteers of America
Women In Safe Homes (WISH)
Amphitheater Public School District
Arizona Housing Coalition
Chance for Success Street Newspaper
Child & Family Resources, Inc.
Homeless Youth Connection
Our Family Services
Homeless Youth Connection – Arizona
Sister Jose Women’s Center
TUSD Family and Community Outreach Department – Arizona
Marana Unified School District – Arizona
Family Promise of Pulaski County
Bill Wilson Center
Bright Star Schools
California Homeless Youth Project
Family Promise of San Joaquin County
Irvine Valley College
John Burton Advocates for Youth
Orange County United Way
YMCA of San Diego County, Community Support Services
Center for Children’s Advocacy
Kids in Crisis
Ascension Catholic Community
Changing the Narratives
Collier County Public Schools
Family Promise of Brevard
Family Promise of Satellite Beach
Florida Coalition to End Homelessness
The Institute of Equity Competence, LLC
Love Beyond Walls
StandUp for Kids
Hawaii Children’s Action Network
Excel Into Independence, NFP
Howard Brown Health
The Night Ministry
Waymaker Ministries, Inc.
Metro Lutheran Ministry
Wichita Children’s Home
Seven Counties Services
Covenant House of New Orleans
Volunteers of America Northern New England
His Hope Ministries
YMCA of Greater Boston
Alternatives for Girls
Detroit Phoenix Center
L AND C Ministries
Youth In Need
CCSD Title I HOPE – Nevada
Nevada Partnership for Homeless Youth
Adolescent Representation Clinic at Columbia Law School
American Dance Therapy Association
Family Life Academy Charter School 3
Buncombe County Schools
Child Care Services Association
Harnett County Schools
NC Families United
Thompson Child and Family Focus
Battered Women’s Shelter and Rape Crisis Center of Summit and Medina Counties
Columbus City Schools
Bethel School District (McKinney Vento)
Family Promise of Greater Denver
HomePlate Youth Services
McKinney Vento Portland Public Schools
Center for Leadership Development and Advocacy
East Penn SD
Homeless Children’s Education Fund
NEPA Youth Shelter
People’s Emergency Center
Philadelphia Interfaith Hospitality Network
Rhode Island KIDS Count
Family Promise of Bradley County
Growing Home Southeast
Homeless Network of Texas
Mesquite ISD Family Support
Texas Homeless Network
Texas Network of Youth Services
Henrico County Public Schools
Readiness To Learn
South Whidbey School District McKinney-Vento
Sasha Bruce Youthwork
Child & Youth Advocacy Center
Florence Crittenton Services, Inc.
Harmony House CAC
Harrison County CAC
Just for Kids
Monogalia County CAC
Safe Haven CAC
Team for WV Children
The Lighthouse CAC
The Children’s Listening Place
Women & Children’s Hospital CAC
WV National Association for Social Workers
WV Child Advocacy Network
WV Behavioral Healthcare Providers Association
WV Child Care Association
WV Primary Care Association
West Virginia Infant/Toddler Mental Health Association
West Virginia Parent Training and Information, Inc.
West Virginia Children’s Home Society
WV Coalition to End Homelessness
WV Head Start Association
Pathfinders Milwaukee, Inc.
Children, youth, & families experiencing #homelessness have been largely left out of previous #COVID19 legislation. This bill fills the gap and provides funding through systems to which families are most connected with. Support them: https://bit.ly/2YjItHs
Thank you @RepJohnYarmuth, @RepDonBacon, @RepDannyDavis, & @RepDonYoung for introducing the House version of the Emergency Family Stabilization Act. This bill provides $2B in flexible funding for #homeless children, youth, families. Take action NOW: https://bit.ly/2YjItHs
The Emergency Family Stabilization Act includes set-asides for tribes, urban, rural, and suburban areas. Funds may be used for housing, health, education, and safety-related activities. This bill will help prevent long-term #homelessness. Learn more: https://bit.ly/2YjItHs
Tell your U.S. Senators and U.S. Representatives to insist that the Emergency Family Stabilization Act be included in the next #coronavirus relief package. https://bit.ly/2YjItHs
- Fill out an easy form
- Endorse this legislation
- Share on social media
Thank you @lisamurkowski, @sen_joemanchin, and @SenatorSinema for introducing the Emergency Family Stabilization Act, S.3923, to help meet the needs of children, youth & families experiencing #homelessness following #COVID19. Learn how to support: https://bit.ly/2YjItHs
The Emergency Family Stabilization Act, S.3923, provides new flexible funding through systems to which #homeless children, youth, and families are most connected: schools, early childhood programs & community-based organizations. Learn how to support: https://bit.ly/2YjItHs
In the wake of COVID-19, children, youth, & families experiencing #homelessness face new barriers to stability. The Emergency Family Stabilization Act, S.3923, meets families and youth WHERE THEY ARE, and provides flexible funding through @ACFHHS to help: https://bit.ly/2YjItHs
Most #homeless children and youth aren’t eligible for @HUDgov’s #homeless programs (Emergency Solutions Grant (ESG)), or may have needs that ESG programs cannot meet. The Emergency Family Stabilization Act helps fill this gap. Take one minute to support: https://bit.ly/2YjItHs