HUD Archives: News Releases

Kristine Foye
(617) 994-8218
For Release
December 17, 2007

Funding part of $59.1 million awarded nationwide

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development has awarded funding to agencies in Connecticut to help
low-income residents get job training and employment placement.

The funding is provided through HUD's Family Self-Sufficiency (FSS) Program, which encourages communities to develop local strategies to help families who live in public housing or participate in HUD's Housing Choice Voucher (formerly known as Section 8) program obtain employment that will lead to economic independence and self-sufficiency. Public housing authorities work with welfare agencies, schools, businesses, and other local partners to develop a comprehensive program that gives participating FSS family members the skills and experience to enable them to obtain employment.

The funding is distributed to public housing authorities, which allows them to hire or retain FSS coordinators on
staff to assist adult residents to find employment. The coordinators link participants to resources in the community that can help with their job search, such as job training opportunities, employment placement programs or local employers. The coordinators also help individuals locate childcare, counseling services, and transportation, which
are often times impediments to employment.

"Through this program, families will get the assistance they need to help them get on their road to financial independence," said HUD Regional Director Taylor Caswell. "Some families have become homeowners or debt-free
as a result of this program, thanks to their commitment and determination to thrive."

Participants sign a five-year contract that stipulates the head of the household will find suitable employment.
Because public housing and voucher rents are tied to income, when income rises, rent rises. With the FSS program, the rent increase is paid to the housing authority, but goes into an interest-bearing escrow account. If the participant successfully graduates from the program, he or she can use the escrow account for a variety of goals, including down payment on a home, starting a business, paying back debts or paying educational expenses.

The grants were awarded to the following agencies in Connecticut:

Housing Authority of the City of Norwalk
Housing Authority of the City of New Haven
Housing Authority of the City of Meriden
Housing Authority of the City of Ansonia
West Hartford Housing Corporation
Stamford Housing Authority
Greenwich Housing Authority
State Total


Content Archived: March 30, 2011