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Michigan's Homeless Veterans Will See $1.3 Million From Federal Supportive Housing Program

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File Photo. Homeless U.S. military veterans salute the flag during the Pledge of Allegiance at a 'Stand Down' event hosted by the Department of Veterans Affairs on November 3, 2011 in Denver, Colorado.
File Photo. Homeless U.S. military veterans salute the flag during the Pledge of Allegiance at a 'Stand Down' event hosted by the Department of Veterans Affairs on November 3, 2011 in Denver, Colorado.

Homeless Michigan veterans will soon receive some much needed assistance finding a place to stay.

On Tuesday, Sens. Carl Levin and Debbie Stabenow, both Michigan Democrats, announced $1.3 million dollars in grants from the federal government to assist housing initiatives for veterans. The U.S. Departments of Housing and Urban Development and Veterans Affairs will distribute the funds to seven Michigan housing agencies as part of their Supportive Housing Program. The agencies will use the money to provide qualifying veterans with rental assistance vouchers.

"I believe that our veterans should not have to stand at the back of any line," Stabenow said in a statement. "When they return home, we have a commitment to remember their sacrifices by making sure they have access to health care, job opportunities and the most basic of needs – a place to live."

The Michigan State Housing Development Authority will receive $472,343. The rest of the funds will go to the following housing commissions: $308,209 to Kent County, $143,085 to Flint, $130,643 to Ann Arbor , $122,860 to Lansing , $91,475 to Battle Creek and $73,429 to Muskegon.

A 2010 HUD report estimated 900 veterans live in homeless shelters or on the streets in Michigan.

The same report found veterans are over-represented in the general homeless population. While veterans are just 8 percent of the U.S. population, according the the document, they make up 12 percent of the country's total homeless population and 16 percent of its homeless adults.

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