Congressmen Crowley, Nadler Secure Funding for HOPWA in the VA/HUD Appropriations Bill for Fiscal Year 2003

Feb 23, 2003

Washington, DC-Congressman Joseph Crowley (NY-07) and Congressman Jerrold Nadler (NY-08) announced $292 million in federal funding for the Housing Opportunities for Persons with AIDS (HOPWA) program for Fiscal Year (FY) 2003.

“Today, I am happy to announce that $292 million has been allocated for HOPWA in the Fiscal Year 2003 VA/HUD Appropriations bill. This vital program offers thousands of people living with HIV/AIDS and their families the safety and stability of a housing safety net, so that they can focus on their health and take advantage of the benefits of drug treatments that have contributed to a dramatic reduction in AIDS mortality in this nation. I particularly thank my colleague, Congressman Jerrold Nadler (NY-08), who spearheaded the path to additional funding. The HOPWA program, which enjoys wide bipartisan support, is the only federal housing program that specifically provides cities and states hardest-hit by the AIDS epidemic with the resources to address the housing crisis facing people living with AIDS. I know that this important program will continue to serve those in need for many years to come,” commented Congressman Crowley.

"Those who suffer from HIV and AIDS face enormous challenges-from the high cost of medication, to the longstanding societal bias which is still very real. Adequate housing should not be among those challenges," said Congressman Nadler. "There are a lot of people who use the word 'compassion' as a buzz-word in Washington. Providing funding for HOPWA gives us a chance to put our money where our mouth is. I know Congressman Crowley will join me in the fight to provide more funding for programs such as this, so that we can provide real compassion to the people who need it the most."

President Bush demonstrated his commitment to the HOPWA program by requesting a $15 million increase for FY03. Despite consistent support from the Appropriations Committee in increasing HOPWA’s annual appropriation, the growing demand for services required a substantial increase this year. HOPWA enables cities and states to design and provide community-based, cost-effective housing for people living with AIDS and their families. It provides maximum flexibility to states and communities to implement strategies that respond to local housing needs and shortfalls. In addition, the administrative costs of the program are capped, ensuring the money goes directly to serving people with AIDS.

In FY 2001 alone, HOPWA funds served over 61,700 people in roughly 49,400 units of housing, in 71 cities and 34 states across the nation. Unfortunately, the demand for housing accommodations for people living with HIV/AIDS continues to greatly outweigh the resources currently available.