Juvenile Reentry Assistance Program will reduce barriers to public housing, jobs and educational opportunities
WASHINGTON – (RealEstateRama) — To help advance housing, jobs and educational opportunities for justice-involved youth, HUD and the Department of Justice today announced $300,000 in grants to Public Housing Authorities (PHAs)and legal assistance organizations in New Jersey, Pennsylvania and Ohio. These grants willaddress challenges justice-involved individuals face when trying to find work and a place to call home. Read below a complete project-by-project summary of the programs awarded funding today.
The following is a state-by-state breakdown of the funding:
|Juvenile Reentry Assistance Program Grants|
|NJ||Housing Authority of the City of Camden||Northeast New Jersey Legal Services||Camden||
|NJ||Housing Authority of the City of Paterson||Rutgers University Law School Reentry Clinic||Paterson||
|OH||Columbus Metropolitan Housing Authority||Legal Aid Society of Columbus||Columbus||
|PA||Housing Authority of City of Pittsburgh||Duquesne University School of Law||Pittsburgh||
Funded through HUD’s Juvenile Reentry Assistance Program (JRAP), HUD and DOJ are teaming up to help Americans who’ve paid their debt to society rehabilitate and reintegrate back into their communities.JRAP awarded the funding to PHAs who have a partnership with a nonprofit legal service organization with experience providing legal services to juveniles. In April, HUD and DOJ awarded $1.75 million to PHAs and their partners to help justice-involved individuals find jobs and housing.
This program specifically excludes makers of meth on public housing property, sex offenders on a lifetime registry or those convicted of domestic violence.
“It’s in everyone’s interest when youth who have paid their debt to society can re-enter their communities with job skills and greater access to opportunity,” said HUD Secretary Julián Castro. “These grants go to the heart of that challenge by helping more youth reach their full potential.”
Having a juvenile or a criminal record can severely limit a person’s ability to seek higher education, find good employment, or secure affordable housing. Today, there are nearly 55,000 individuals under age 21 in juvenile justice facilities. These consequences create unnecessary barriers to economic opportunity and productivity, and President Obama and members of his Cabinet continue to take impactful steps to ensure those exiting the justice system become productive, law-abiding citizens
To help alleviate collateral consequences associated with a juvenile or criminal record, JRAP will assist youth up to age 24 residing in public housing, or who would be residing in public housing but for their record, with:
- Expunging, Sealing, and/or Correcting Juvenile or Adult Records; as permitted by State law,
- Assisting targeted youth in mitigating/preventing collateral consequences such as, reinstating revoked or suspended drivers’ licenses;
- Counseling regarding legal rights and obligations in searching for employment;
- Providing guidance for readmission to school;
- Creating or modifying child support orders and other family law services, and more.
HUD’s mission is to create strong, sustainable, inclusive communities and quality affordable homes for all.
More information about HUD and its programs is available on the Internet
at www.hud.gov and http://espanol.hud.gov.
Housing Authority of the City of Paterson, Paterson, NJ
Northeast New Jersey Legal Services (partner)
Award Amount: $53,464 Contributed Match: $62,930
The Paterson Juvenile Reentry Assistance Program (JRAP) is a partnership among the Housing Authority of the City of Paterson (HACP), Northeast New Jersey Legal Services (NNJLS), and Project Reconnect Community Development Center Corporation (“Project Reconnect”) with a goal to provide eligible residents with enhanced opportunities to obtain stable housing, secure employment, and pursue education. To meet its goal, the Paterson JRAP partners will provide a mix of legal representation and advice, education, and referrals for reentry and supportive services.
The Paterson JRAP Plan also looks to provide, through a diverse list of community partners who have committed in-kind resources, a comprehensive, high quality results oriented reentry program that (1) responds to the needs of residents; (2) incorporates mentoring and advocacy, as well as counseling and life skills training as part of the service delivery; (3) builds upon the existing foundation of the program partners’ experience and expertise; and (4) integrates a workforce development strategy that offers access to job readiness, job training and employment related service to assist program participants with successful transition to the community.
Housing Authority of the City of Camden Camden, NJ
Rutgers University Law School Reentry Clinic (partner)
Current Award: $43,536 Contributed Match: $35,825
The Housing Authority of the City of Camden (HACC) has entered into a partnership with Rutgers University Law School Reentry Clinic (RLSRC). The HACC will combine the resources of its well established YouthBuild program, Success Learning ABE Center, and Family Self Sufficiency programs to seamlessly link and leverage federal with State resources. We will execute pledges of Mutual Commitment with participants detailing the youths’ active involvement and HACC’s and RLSRC’s responsibility to provide the required and optional legal and support services. Youth will market JRAP by creating a series of crime prevention and collateral consequences videos for uploading to YouTube and establishing Facebook and Twitter accounts.
HACC and RLSRC’s approach to implementing JRAP will also support the Office of the Mayor’s Promise Zone goals of Increasing Economic Activity (provide job training services and family self-sufficiency programs) and Improving Educational Outcomes by increasing the number of parents who have the information, services, and sup-port they need to help their children succeed.
Housing Authority of the City of Pittsburgh Pittsburgh, PA
Duquesne University School of Law (partner)
Award Amount: $100,000 Contributed Match: $41,246
The Housing Authority of the City of Pittsburgh (HACP) and the Juvenile Defender Clinic of Duquesne University will partner to provide legal services to eligible youth up to the age of 24. While the expungement process in Pennsylvania is straightforward, the financial cost is simply not feasible for youth living in public housing, where the average gross income is less than $10,000 annually. The spiraling consequences of a criminal record, whether juvenile or adult, significantly impacts the youths’ ability to finish or seek additional education, gain meaningful employment or be contributing members of their community.
HACP and Duquesne University will partner to provide legal services in the following low-income public housing communities: Allegheny Dwellings, Arlington Heights, Bedford Dwellings, Glen Hazel, Hamilton-Larimer, Homewood North and Northview Heights. Services will be provided via the Juvenile Defender Clinic in cooperation with HACP staff and HACP’s Departments of Public Safety and Resident Self- Sufficiency.
Columbus Metropolitan Housing Authority Columbus, OH
Legal Aid Society of Columbus (partner)
Award Amount: $100,000 Contributed Match: $25,000
Franklin County youth who have been in the justice system face barriers to housing, education, and employment. A recent felony conviction may disqualify them living in from public housing.
These youth may be part of the estimated 1,200-1,500 homeless youth 14-24 in Franklin County living on the streets, in abandoned buildings or couch surfing. Most homeless youth are disconnected from their families; 60% have some involvement with the criminal justice system; and all are underserved by the community. Although the central Ohio economy is strong, these youth are not prepared for the available jobs.
The Columbus Metropolitan Housing Authority and the Legal Aid Society of Colum-bus will work together to educate public housing residents about the effects of col-lateral sanctions on the target population, and provide ongoing and regularly scheduled opportunities for community residents to engage with LASC in discussion about expungement, record sealing, and other legal issues that pose barriers to education, meaningful work, stable housing, and access to healthcare. This partnership is intended to have a ripple effect by engaging other human service agencies, including workforce development agencies, juvenile and adult courts, the schools and charter schools, and health care providers to create a network of holistic services that are available to address the social and emotional needs of the target group to help them become engaged and productive members of their communities.