Sen. Warren presses the Biden admin on stalled housing program for hurricane survivors

ABC News reports that Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) and Rep. Adriano Espaillat (D-NY) are pressing President Joe Biden and his administration about a housing program that was supposed to be up and running for this year’s hurricane season, but isn’t. 

Warren and Espaillat did so amid the destruction caused by Hurricane Ian. The storm has taken lives and caused catastrophic property damage. Even worse, it has displaced countless people.

This is where the housing program was supposed to come in.

DASH

The program’s name is the Disaster Assistance and Supportive Housing program (DASH). The idea behind the program is for the government to subsidize housing for people who lose their homes during natural disasters such as Hurricane Ian.

DASH was supposed to be up and running by March of this year, long before the arrival of the Atlantic hurricane season.

But, to this day, the program still has not begun, and there is yet to be an explanation as to why this is the case.

Warren and Espaillat decided last week to send a letter to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). In the letter, Warren and Espaillat essentially ask the Biden administration for an update on DASH.

Statements

Both Warren and Espalliat have put out statements on the matter.

“Year after year we are devastated by hurricanes, floods, and other natural disasters and year after year we are ill-prepared to meet the needs of the affected communities,” Warren said. “As we begin the 2022 hurricane season, I am urging FEMA and HUD to act quickly to implement the DASH program so that no families, no matter their income, fall through service gaps in existing disaster relief programs.”

Espaillat, similarly, stated, “We are living in a time where our communities are under-prepared when natural disasters strike as we recently witnessed with Hurricane Fiona—and this is completely unacceptable.”

No update yet

Warren and Espalliat have asked for FEMA and HUD to provide the update by mid-October.

FEMA, so far, has only said that it is “reviewing the letter.”