The Decent, Affordable, Safe Housing for All (DASH) Act Would Authorize Mandatory Housing Voucher Program
Shortly before the U.S. Senate left town for their August recess, Senate Finance Committee Chairman Ron Wyden (D-OR) released draft legislation that would make far-reaching investments and improvements in affordable housing tax and spending programs. The “Decent, Affordable, Safe Housing for All Act,” or the DASH Act, expected to be formally introduced in Congress when the Senate returns in September, would authorize a mandatory housing voucher program, eliminate homelessness for children and families within five years, authorize improvements to the housing tax credit program, and institute reforms to health, child care, financial and nutrition services for families and individuals and set them on the path to housing stability, along with other major changes. According to the Senator’s office, the bill will:
- House all children and families experiencing homelessness within five years by issuing them a Housing Choice Voucher, because young children are heavily impacted by housing instability, and because housing is a chief determinant of health;
- Expand health, child care, financial and nutrition services for families and individuals to stay on a path to unassisted housing stability, because the climb out of housing poverty is nearly impossible to complete alone;
- Greatly increase the production of deeply affordable housing for families exiting homelessness and for low-income households by reforming the tax code and investing in effective, efficient existing programs; and,
- Invest in homeownership in underserved communities and for low income Americans with new tax credits and downpayment assistance.