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Upthegrove Announces New Community-Centered Approach to $45M Boost in County Rental Assistance

Summary

King County Councilmember Dave Upthegrove announced today that King County will provide an additional $45 million in rental assistance to King County tenants facing financial hardship due to the pandemic. At least one-third of the funds will be distributed using a new approach involving community-based organizations working most closely with populations disproportionately impacted by the pandemic.

Story

King County Councilmember Dave Upthegrove announced today that King County will provide an additional $45 million in rental assistance to King County tenants facing financial hardship due to the pandemic. At least one-third of the funds will be distributed using a new approach involving community-based organizations working most closely with populations disproportionately impacted by the pandemic.

 

Under a new “hub-and-spoke” approach developed in consultation with community leaders, larger organizations (the “hubs”) will be able to work with smaller organizations (the “spokes”) to drive rental assistance dollars out to community members. Eligible organizations will include non-profits that work with individuals who have historically been disproportionately impacted by discrimination in housing and those who have suffered disproportionate health and economic impacts during the pandemic.

 

“Throughout the pandemic, I’ve been meeting regularly with local community leaders from communities of color and immigrant and refugee communities. They shared opportunities and ideas for how to distribute the funding in ways to better reach the most impacted members of our community,” said Councilmember Upthegrove. “This new approach will further enhance our racial equity goals and support the good work of all our local organizations working tirelessly to keep people housed.

 

“Funding community-based organizations that serve Black, Indigenous, and People of Color is not just equitable, but also more effective, efficient and culturally and linguistically responsive” said Ginger Kwan, Executive Director of Open Doors for Multicultural Families.

 

“The ‘Hub and Spoke’ model provides that the hardest hit community members receive financial assistance from their trusted community organizations. In addition, forming an advisory committee that includes the leaders from the BIPOC communities will ensure the future COVID related funds are distributed equitably. “

 

These funds increase the County’s commitment to keeping people housed during this pandemic to more than $90 million. Significant additional funds are expected to become available in late spring as part of the American Rescue Plan. As part of the new approach supported by Councilmember Upthegrove, the county will also establish an eviction prevention and rental assistance advisory committee comprised of representatives from the African-American, Native American and Alaska Native, Asian/Pacific Islander, Latinx, immigrant and refugee, disability and LGBTQI+ communities. This committee will provide recommendations to the County about the use of the future rental assistance funds.

 

For more information about the King County Rental Assistance and Eviction Prevention Program - https://kingcounty.gov/depts/community-human-services/COVID/eviction-prevention-rent-assistance.aspx

 


Contact the Council
Main phone:
206-477-1000
TTY/TDD:
206-296-1024
Email:
council@kingcounty.gov