Allies for Every Child has joined John Burton Advocates for Youth (JBAY) to urge California legislators to pass AB 525 and AB 799, which would improve the state’s efforts to prevent and ultimately end youth homelessness. The need for these investments in young adults could not be more clear: Nearly half of youth in foster care in California experience an episode of homelessness between age 18 and 21. More than one-third experience homelessness more than once, averaging weeks to months.
AB 525: Improving Housing Affordability & Reducing Homelessness Among Foster Youth, authored by Assemblymember Phil Ting, would prevent homelessness by improving housing affordability for more than 3,300 foster youth in Supervised Independent Living Placements (SILPs) and maximizing federal funding for foster youth housing. Currently in California, 3,361 foster youth are placed in a SILP and receive a monthly foster care payment of $1,129 that is meant to pay not only for housing, but for all of their basic necessities: housing, food, transportation, utilities, clothing, supplies, etc.—and this flat rate is the same throughout the state, regardless of local housing costs. AB 525 would establish a SILP Housing Supplement, which will provide a supplementary payment to youth placed in a SILP based on the local cost of housing, and help youth achieve housing stability and independence.
AB 799: Homelessness Accountability & Results Act, authored by Assemblymember Luz Rivas, would make several significant improvements to the Homeless Housing, Assistance, and Prevention (HHAP) program, including moving this critical funding source (which has helped reduce youth homelessness in California by 21% since 2020) from unpredictable one-time allocations of funding to ongoing funding, and supporting a stable homeless services workforce that can deliver solutions consistently and at scale. This would allow local responses to homelessness to finally reach the scale needed to rehouse people faster than they are falling into homelessness, and to ramp up homelessness prevention efforts that can end the pipeline of vulnerable Californians (like transition age youth who have aged out of foster care, and youth in extended foster care) falling into homelessness for the first time.
For more information about these bills and resources to show your support, visit JBAY’s website.