Initiative is one of the 30 short-term action items in six months underway by Office of HOPE
DENVER – Denver Mayor Michael B. Hancock’s Office of Housing and Opportunities for People Everywhere (HOPE) today outlined a new citywide partnership aimed at providing coordinated, strategic assistance for people facing eviction, and support for vulnerable neighborhoods. The initiative is one of the 30 short-term action items unveiled by Mayor Hancock and the Office of HOPE on Friday at the Denver Housing Summit.
“We know far too many people in Denver are facing eviction, are being priced out of their homes, or are living in a community that is highly vulnerable to change that displaces longtime residents,” Mayor Hancock said. “Through the Office of HOPE’s coordinated eviction assistance programs, we are pulling together the city’s work to strategically invest city dollars to help the most people gain or maintain affordable homes, good paying jobs, and healthy lifestyles.”
The coordinated eviction assistance program includes:
- Harnessing data from the Office of Economic Development (OED), Department of Environmental Health (DEH), and Denver Human Services (DHS) to identify “highly vulnerable neighborhoods” and provide targeted eviction assistance funding to those residents
- Making impactful investments to mitigate displacement in identified “highly vulnerable neighborhoods”
- Strategically aligning programs, like DHS’ eviction assistance, with other programs already serving those populations, such as eviction court and the Denver Sheriff Department (DSD), and coordinating those with resources and data from OED and DEH initiatives
“Health, housing, and good paying jobs are the keystones of a good life,” said Erik Soliván, executive director of the Mayor’s Office of HOPE. “Through this program, we are harnessing the existing resources of the city to help more people who are already in a home, stay in that home, and to help our communities who are highly vulnerable to change maintain the people and culture that make them uniquely Denver.”
The Office of HOPE will lead:
- DHS expansion of an innovative in-court eviction assistance program developed in coordination with Denver City Council and connect it further to programs that address the full spectrum of eviction. Through a recent 30-day pilot, nine families received rental or deposit assistance and 36 obtained other resources. DHS placed an outreach worker inside eviction court to connect people to eviction and rental assistance resources. DSD deputies also distributed DHS eviction assistance and resource information to residents facing eviction.
- DEH completion of a data analysis of landlord and tenant violations, and continuation of the navigator program, which launched in 2017 and provides timely referrals for families and individuals facing displacement, including eviction, due to residential health issue or investigation.
- OED’s execution of a temporary emergency housing assistance pilot program which will launch later this summer. The program is made possible through the new dedicated housing fund and will support low- to moderate-income households facing a financial hardship or other housing crisis, such as a potential eviction, which puts them at risk of losing stable housing.
- Use data analysis to identify impact investments to mitigate displacement in highly vulnerable neighborhoods.
Other items to be completed are included in the office’s 30 item short-term action plan.