Emergency shelter sign on by MONDAY, Tuesday immigrants/benefits training

As we head into the weekend, we wanted to say we know it is a very heavy and hard time around the world and here in New England. We feel this with all of you. We are sending you care and hope you have time together with loved ones in the sunshine this weekend. A particular note of support and care to our anti-hunger colleagues in Maine who are grieving while also serving their community right now. 

In terms of action steps: We have a number of updates and information we will share out early next week, but in the meantime please take the following urgent action on access to shelter for families, and register for next Tuesday's training:

Sign on to emergency shelter for families letter by NOON on Monday, 10/30!

On October 16 Governor Healey announced that the state will no longer guarantee access to Emergency Assistance (EA) shelter for eligible children and families after October 31st. This comes as the EA program faces a large projected deficit and the number of families in shelter has jumped from approximately 3,800 families in January to 7,256 families.

The Massachusetts Coalition for the Homeless, Massachusetts Law Reform Institute, and the American Civil Liberties Union of Massachusetts of Massachusetts are partnering on a quick-turnaround sign-on letter to the Legislature urging them to immediately provide the supplemental funding needed to keep families safe and the doors to shelter open, while the state develops a more thorough response plan.

Please add your organization's name to the letter (here) -- before noon on Monday, October 30th, and share the sign-on letter form with allied organizations. We also hope you will join us in front of the State House on Tuesday for our Halloween Day action: https://mahomeless.org/support-families-protect-right-to-shelter/

We are stronger together, and our communities are stronger when we stand with children and families.

Health Care, Food and Cash Benefits Available to New Arrivals in MA - Free Training on Tuesday, October 31st

Hosted by the Mass Immigrant and Refugee Advocacy (MIRA) Coalition, this 10/31 training is from 10 to 11:30 AM. This training offers the nuts-and-bolts on how immigration status affects eligibility for state and federal public benefits. You'll hear from MLRI and Health Law Advocates (HLA) about public benefits available to new arrivals including: MassHealth and other subsidized health care programs, DTA cash assistance (TAFDC and EAEDC) and the federal SNAP and child nutrition programs. You'll also hear from a MIRA immigrant specialist on the many protections for immigrants under the Biden administration’s new public charge rules. Register HERE.