Alaska Native veterans to receive federal housing assistance

WASHINGTON -- The federal government on Friday announced $5.9 million in grants to tribes aimed at caring for homeless veterans, including 60 Alaskans.

More than $1 million of the grant money, released by the Department of Housing and Urban Development and the Department of Veterans Affairs, will go to housing authorities in Anchorage, Juneau and Bethel. Each will provide rental assistance and support for 20 Native veterans who are homeless or at risk of being homeless.

"These heroes deserve hope for a brighter future, and by offering permanent housing solutions, combined with needed services and case management, we can work with tribes to end veteran homelessness," said HUD Secretary Julián Castro.

Since 2008, more than 90,000 homeless veterans have been involved in the program, according to the VA. But this is the first time the voucher program has been aimed at Natives, following recent statutory changes, according to Secretary of Veterans Affairs Robert McDonald.

In Alaska, the vouchers will be administered by the Cook Inlet Housing Authority in Anchorage, the Tlingit-Haida Regional Housing Authority in Juneau and the Association of Village Council Presidents Regional Housing Authority in Bethel.

Erica Martinson

Erica Martinson is Alaska Dispatch News' Washington, DC reporter, and she covers the legislation, regulation and litigation that impact the Last Frontier.  Erica came to ADN after years as a reporter covering energy at POLITICO. Before that, she covered environmental policy at a DC trade publication and worked at several New York dailies.