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Tester bill aims to bolster housing support for Native veterans

Apartment complex. Stock photo.
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Sen. Jon Tester Wednesday announced the introduction of a bill that aims to provide more support for homeless Native veterans.

The bill would carve out a portion of housing vouchers for use by Indigenous vets enrolled in the VA and tribal housing authorities. The housing vouchers are offered by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and given to vets enrolled in VA case management services.

Native Americans serve in the military at higher rates compared to other racial groups, andstudies indicate that Native veterans experience the highest rate of homelessness, according to the VA.

The bill would also require that both the VA and HUD consult with tribes to better offer resources to homeless vets and report to Congress on the issue every five years.

The current term of Congress is scheduled to end in the coming weeks.

Aaron graduated from the University of Minnesota School of Journalism in 2015 after interning at Minnesota Public Radio. He landed his first reporting gig in Wrangell, Alaska where he enjoyed the remote Alaskan lifestyle and eventually moved back to the road system as the KBBI News Director in Homer, Alaska. He joined the MTPR team in 2019. Aaron now reports on all things in northwest Montana and statewide health care.