Simmons HosuingSPRINGFIELD – State Senator Mike Simmons passed legislation through the Senate which will improve access to affordable housing for young people experiencing homelessness, particularly those struggling with mental health issues or substance abuse.

“This bill is directly informed by community partners and constituents who have told us many young people age out of programs and services when they turn 18, putting them in limbo for additional support services until they turn 21,” said Simmons (D-Chicago). “By lowering the eligibility age to 18, we can help more young people when they need it most, and prevent future housing insecurity and instability.”

The Housing is Recovery pilot program provides affordable housing through a pairing of rental subsidies and access to recovery support services or treatment for individuals contending with mental health and substance abuse issues.

Senate Bill 3297 seeks to expand the eligibility criteria for the Housing is Recovery pilot program by lowering the age of eligibility from 21 years to 18 years.

“This is common-sense legislation that ensures young people who need stable housing avoid worse outcomes,” said Simmons. “Lowering the eligibility age for the Housing Recovery Program is an easy step to take, and will directly help to prevent houselessness and ensure young people get the care and treatment they need right where they live.”

Senate Bill 3297 heads to the House for further consideration.