As we approach Veterans Day on November 11, National CORE reaffirms its commitment to those who have selflessly served our nation. In a world marked by the complexities of civilian life, the return to home soil often presents a formidable challenge for many of our veterans, and those challenges should never lead to homelessness.

In 2022, National CORE, in partnership with the BIA, created a white paper advocating for flexible housing benefits for veterans that would deliver more housing and services for vulnerable veterans faster. The paper highlights that nearly 40,000 veterans are without shelter in the U.S. on any given night and lists the leading causes of homelessness among vets as PTSD, social isolation, unemployment and substance abuse.

The paper further mentions systemic problems that have led to inefficiencies, such as the number of Section 8 Veterans Affairs Supportive Housing (VASH) vouchers that go unused because of cumbersome restrictions and the failure of the VA to identify qualified voucher holders. It also states that there should be more focus on the first year after service members leave military service when veterans are trying to find employment, affordable housing and service to help them address personal challenges related to the transition.

It is National CORE’s wish that policymakers and industry leaders will join us in advocating for a Flexible Housing Benefit for veterans. Under our proposal, veterans would receive a flexible housing benefit for up to two years after leaving military service if they enroll in an education or trade school program. This would help veterans secure much-needed financial resources as they pursue educational or vocational training, ensuring stability and housing while helping facilitate access to all the VA benefits and services available.