At the last family services meeting on Tuesday, 8/14, the Family Services Committee had en engaging and provocative conversation around DHCD’s proposed regulatory changes to the EA program. Ruth Bourquin of the Mass Law Reform Institute and Kelly Turley of Mass. Coalition for the Homeless joined us to share their perspective and concerns. Click here for a summary of the discussion in the meeting minutes and click here for MLRI’s memo outlining the problems in more detail. Also, to read a statement from Peter Gagliardi, executive director of HAP, expressing overall support of DHCD’s approach, please click here.
Due to the urgent circumstances surrounding the EA regulations, at our last meeting it was decided to move up our next meeting date to:
Wednesday, September 5
Northampton Senior Center (to be confirmed)
67 Conz Street, Northampton
We will return in October to our regular 2nd Tuesday meeting schedule.
The Committee’s agreed upon “next steps” as summarized in the meeting minutes are also below. They include:
1. Track response to new regulations on doubled-up families – what are you seeing in your community?
2. Brainstorm possible local responses to sudden homelessness without access to shelter in anticipation of a collective brainstorm at our next meeting.
3. Bring back these concerns to your agency directors; generate an internal discussion and review in preparation for our next committee meeting where we will discuss a network position on these regulatory changes.
4. Consider your own personal position on these proposed changes and contact your legislator to share it.
Time is of the essence as the “doubled-up” regulation is being implemented NOW and the other regulatory changes would begin on September 17, unless the legislature intervenes.
Thanks for taking the time to absorb this information and to consider next action steps on it. I look forward to talking more.