Veteran Program to Assist Low Income Veterans and Their Families
From the Office of County Excutive Bellone:
County Executive Steve Bellone was joined by Legislators Stern and Anker and participating contract agencies and collaborating partners who will begin administering the Supportive Services for Veteran Families (SSVF) program today.
The program is funded by the US Department of Veteran Affairs and provides supportive services grants to private non-profit organizations and consumer cooperatives who will coordinate or provide supportive services to very low-income veteran families who are residing in permanent housing, are homeless and scheduled to become residents of permanent housing within a specified time period, or after exiting permanent housing, are seeking other housing that is responsive to such very low-income veteran family’s needs and preferences.
“We must continue to do all that we can to ensure those who have fought to protect our country have access to the resources they need to lead productive lives,” said County Executive Bellone. “The SSVF program being enacted today will serve to meet the needs of the most vulnerable veterans and assist with their housing needs as well as offer a myriad of other resources to assist low income veterans.”
There are four agencies that will serve Suffolk County veterans under the SSVF grant: Economic Opportunity Council of Suffolk County, Services for the Underserved, Volunteers of America Greater New York Area, and Black Veterans for Social Justice. These agencies will provide a wide range of services to benefit low-income veterans inclusive of:
- Health care services;
- Daily living services;
- Personal financial planning services;
- Transportation services;
- Fiduciary and payee services;
- Legal services;
- Child care services;
- Housing counseling services.
Adrian Fassett, CEO of the Economic Opportunity Council (EOC) of Suffolk, stated, “We are pleased to have been chosen as a contract agency with the US Department of Veterans Affairs to administer the SSVF program here in Suffolk County. The collaborating partners with the Suffolk County EOC represent a wide array of services and referral opportunities for our Veterans.” As part of the SSVF program, the participating collaborators with EOC include:
- Suffolk County District Court-Providing referrals to veterans who come through the court system to ensure access to all resources available to the veteran population;
- Suffolk County United Veterans (SCUV)-Providing veteran peer support and peer outreach;
- Touro College Jacob D. Fuchberg Law Center-Providing legal services to low-income veterans;
- New York State Department of Labor-Providing employment counseling and training;
- Suffolk County One-Stop Employment Center-Providing employment counseling and training;
- Suffolk County Veterans Service Agency-Providing assistance with benefit claims in the their main office and recently created satellite offices;
- Long Island Coalition for the Homeless, Inc.-Providing housing assistance.
“We honor the veterans whose sacrifices made our freedoms possible,” stated Touro Law Center Dean Patricia Salkin. “We are delighted that the Law Center can repay them in some small way by providing free legal assistance to veterans and their families, particularly those who are tragically most at risk of poverty and homelessness. We are also grateful to be working as part of a team of committed agencies and individuals like Suffolk County government, EOC and private groups to provide comprehensive solutions to veterans’ needs.”
A full range of resources and assistance by the Suffolk County EOC include:
Supportive services available to SSVF participants:
- Personal Financial Planning Services
- Outreach Services
- Income Support Services
- Case Management Services
- Legal Services
- Peer Support
- Housing Counseling, Housing Search
- Assistance obtaining VA benefits
- Vocational & Rehabilitation Services through the New York State Department of Labor
- Assistance obtaining other public benefits
- Employment Training Assistance through the Suffolk County One-Stop Employment Center
- Other Supportive Services/Temporary Financial Assistance
Additional temporary financial assistance may include:
- Rental assistance
- General Housing Stability Assistance
- Utility-fee payment assistance
- Child Care Financial Assistance – Limited
||(4 month – 12 month period)
- Security or Utility Deposit Assistance
- Moving Cost Assistance
- Emergency Housing Assistance
- Veterans may be single or part of a family in which the head of the household, or spouse, is a Veteran.
- Discharge status must be under conditions other than dishonorable.
- Very Low-Income making less than 50% of the area median income (AMI).
- Prevention and Rapid Re-Housing
- Currently residing in permanent housing and at risk of losing housing and becoming literally homeless but for SSVF assistance or
- Currently homeless, scheduled to become a resident of permanent housing within 90 days pending the location of permanent housing or
- Has exited permanent housing within the previous 90 days in order to seek housing that better fits with needs.
Suffolk County, NY
2013 – 50% of the Area Median Income (AMI):
Program start date is October 1st, 2013
Economic Opportunity Council of Suffolk
Contact Robert O’Donnell at 631-289-2124 x 111 for more information
Services for the Underserved
Volunteers of America Greater New York Area
Call 718-841-6231 to learn more
Black Veterans for Social Justice
Photo above: (Pam Killoran, Deputy Commissioner-Department of Department of Labor, Licensing & Consumer Affairs, Wilkins Young, Director of Operations, Suffolk County United Veterans, Timothy Strobel, Program Coordinator, Suffolk County Coordinator PTSD Peer Support Program, Kenneth Rosenblum, Associate Dean for Administration, Touro Law College Jacob Fuchsberg Law Center, Legislator Sarah Anker, Vice Chair, SC Veterans and Seniors Legislative Committee, Tom Ronayne, Director of Suffolk County Veterans Serve Agency, County Executive Steve Bellone, Honorable C. Randall Hinrichs, District Administrative Judge, Suffolk County, Legislator Steve Stern, Chair, SC Veterans and Seniors Legislative Committee, Adrian Fassett, CEO Suffolk County Economic Opportunity Council, Beth Gabellini, Program Director, Service for the Underserved, Frank Amalfitano, Executive Director of United Veterans Beacon House)