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State Announces Construction Underway on Supportive Housing in the Bronx

Homeless Housing Program Funds Support Barrier Free Living Project

June 4, 2013 - The State Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance (OTDA) today announced that ground has been broken on a project that will create 120 units of permanent supportive housing in the Bronx for chronically homeless domestic violence victims with physical disabilities and their families. Construction of the Barrier Free Living Apartments is being supported with $7 million from the State’s Homeless Housing and Assistance Program (HHAP).

Barrier Free Living Inc., a New York City-based organization which assists people with disabilities, including those who are victims of domestic violence, held the groundbreaking today along with other partners in the $42 million project. Last year, HHAP selected this project to receive $7 million in funding.

“These apartments will fill a vital need, providing much-needed permanent supportive housing for individuals and families not only facing homelessness, but also dealing with issues related to a physical disability and, in some cases, domestic violence,” said Kristin M. Proud, Acting Commissioner of OTDA. “Supportive housing is an essential step in assisting families and individuals facing these issues to build foundations for a better future. Those living here will receive the supportive services they need to maintain housing stability and increase their ability to live independently.”

The project will include 50 units for families with a disabled head of household who is a victim of domestic violence, and 70 units for disabled domestic violence victims, women with disabilities who are being diverted from possible nursing home placement, and veterans with disabilities.

This is not the first time HHAP has supported a project by Barrier Free Living. In 2001, $7.6 million in HHAP funding was awarded to Barrier Free Living for Freedom House, a 44-unit, fully-accessible emergency shelter for disabled victims of domestic violence and their families.

HHAP meets a distinct need in New York by providing funding to develop housing for various special needs populations. Since the program’s inception, it has assisted in the development of housing for families, adolescents, persons in recovery, mentally ill individuals, persons living with HIV/AIDS, individuals recently released from incarceration and veterans, among others. HHAP is designed to help all families and individuals move out of homelessness and poverty and achieve the highest level of independence possible.

New York State, through HHAP, has been at the forefront of recognizing the value of providing supported housing for homeless families and individuals. HHAP has been utilized successfully by community organizations to develop more than 14,000 units of housing in New York State.

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