Sorry to be so vague about this but the people involved were very helpful and I don’t want to put anybody out there without their permission. Plus, I’m still in the middle of this so I really don’t want to piss anyone off.
This started with a phone call at nine this morning and many emails later this is how the day ended.
I just got off the phone with the <redacted> Commissioner at HASA – he clarified that no one will be denied housing if they need it, or asked to move out of their current housing; however, applicants for the program will first be offered studio apartments as opposed to one bedrooms. Housing will continue to be administered on a case-by-case basis, and if the applicant has a caretaker or another situation that requires more space than a studio apartment, HASA will work with them to make sure they have the housing they need. He made it clear that offering applicants studio apartments is just another level of assessment.
I hope this addresses your concerns – feel free to be in touch if you have any further questions.
Thanks so much for moving on this so quickly. Sadly, the gentleman you spoke with may be unaware that people ARE AT THIS MOMENT being denied housing because they have leases pending for one bedrooms. Ask Mr. <redacted> at <redacted> who has clients who’s leases have been turned down in the last week. I’m happy to know that he confirmed what I have been told about people already in housing – that they won’t have to leave.
As to his assertion that clients will be offered housing, you must know that HASA almost never actually finds housing for anyone. I lived on a friend’s sofa for two years before being asked to move into an SRO two months ago and in those two years HASA sent me on exactly four interviews, two of which were with the same building. HASA staff have repeatedly told me that my best option is to find my own apartment; something this new policy will make considerably more difficult. I also wonder what “another situation that requires more space” might mean?
Please don’t think me difficult if I find his claim “that offering applicants studio apartments is just another level of assessment” incredulous.