Senator Collins Receives Award for Her Work to End Homelessness

The National Law Center on Homelessness & Poverty Presented Senator Collins with the Bruce F. Vento Award

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Washington, D.C. — The National Law Center on Homelessness & Poverty recently honored U.S. Senator Susan Collins at the 18th annual McKinney-Vento Awards Ceremony in Washington, D.C.

The Law Center presented the Bruce F. Vento Award to U.S. Senator Susan Collins for her efforts to advance legislation to prevent homelessness among young adults, foster children, and families.

“I am grateful to be recognized for my work to reduce youth homelessness. This is one of our nation’s most difficult challenges and its size is staggering, with more than 1.3 million young people experiencing homelessness each year,” said Senator Collins. “This is a call to action. We must send a powerful message to the most vulnerable among us: there are people who care about you, who want you to be safe, and who want you to succeed."

At the ceremony, Senator Collins was delighted to see Mark Swann, the executive director of Preble Street in Portland. Preble Street has served individuals facing homelessness, housing issues, hunger, and poverty since 1975. Senator Collins has been a longtime supporter of Preble Street, which congratulated her on receiving the award.

This May, under Senator Collins’ leadership, the Senate passed the bipartisan appropriations bill that provides essential funding for the Department of Housing and Urban Development by a vote of 89 to 8. This overwhelmingly bipartisan bill includes $2.3 billion for Homeless Assistance Grants, of which $40 million is dedicated for grants targeted to providing comprehensive and coordinated solutions to youth homelessness. In addition, earlier this Congress, Senator Collins introduced the Runaway and Homeless Youth and Trafficking Prevention Act with Senator Patrick Leahy (D-VT), which would strengthen critical preventive and treatment services.

The Law Center, founded in 1989, is the only national legal group dedicated to ending and preventing homelessness. The organization works to expand affordable housing access, meet immediate and long-term needs of the homeless and those at risk, and strengthen the social safety-net.

The McKinney-Vento Awards pays tribute to Congressmen Stewart B. McKinney and Bruce F. Vento, co-authors of the first major legislation addressing the national homelessness crisis. The Law Center also honored Washington Wizard John Wall, Dechert LLP, and Angela Spencer.