October 15, 2013
Titusville Housing Authority hereby adopts the following changes to our Admission and Continued Occupancy Policy and Administrative Plan due to the Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act of 2013 (VAWA 2013).
Summary of Key Changes in VAWA 2013:
· VAWA 2013 expands housing protections to victims of sexual assault. The current regulatory language at 24 CFR part 5, subpart L describes protections for “victims of domestic violence, dating violence, or stalking,” but effective March 7, 2013 (the date that VAWA 2013 was signed into law) these protections were expanded to include victims of sexual assault.
· VAWA 2013 expands protections relating to the prohibition of terminating assistance because of criminal activity directly relating to domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault, or stalking (currently at 24 CFR 5.2005(c)(2)) by replacing the term “immediate family member” with “affiliated individual”. VAWA 2013 provides that criminal activity directly relating to domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault, or stalking that is engaged in by a member of a tenant’s household or any guest or other person under the tenant’s control shall not be cause for termination of assistance, tenancy, or occupancy rights if the tenant or an affiliated individual of the tenant is the victim or threatened victim of the domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault, or stalking (emphasis added). VAWA 2013 defines an “affiliated individual”, with respect to an individual, as a spouse, parent, brother, sister, or child of that individual, or an individual to whom that individual stands in loco parentis (in the place of a parent), or any individual, tenant, or lawful occupant living in the household of that individual.
· VAWA 2013 expands the protections regarding lease bifurcations (currently at 24 CFR 5.2009(a)) by:
o changing the language regarding the violent acts (“criminal acts of physical violence against family members or others” becomes “criminal activity directly relating to domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault, or stalking against an affiliated individual or other individual”), and
o mandating that if such bifurcation occurs, and the removed tenant or lawful occupant was the sole tenant eligible to receive assistance under a covered housing program, THA shall provide any remaining tenant the opportunity to establish eligibility for the covered housing program. If the remaining tenant cannot establish eligibility, THA is required to provide the tenant a reasonable time to find new housing or to establish eligibility under another covered housing program. HUD will provide through rulemaking or guidance, as may be applicable, what constitutes a reasonable time for remaining tenants to find new housing or establish eligibility under another HUD covered housing program.
· VAWA 2013 expands the forms of documentation that a victim may provide. Specifically, VAWA 2013 provides that the forms of documentation of a victim may provide (currently at 24 CFR 5.2007(b)(2)-(3), and listed on the form HUD-50066) also include a record of an administrative agency, and documentation from a mental health professional. Additionally, VAWA 2013 provides that the victim is required to provide the name of the perpetrator on the HUD-50066 only if the name of the perpetrator is safe to provide and is known to the victim.
· VAWA 2013 expands the notification requirements (currently at 24 CFR 5.2005(a)(1)) to require that PHAs provide the notice when a person is denied assistance, when a person is admitted, and when a tenant is notified of eviction or termination of housing benefits, and to require that the notice be provided together with form HUD-50066.
o Additionally, VAWA 2013 requires that HUD develop the notice of rights that PHAs are required to provide to applicants/participants. Until such time that HUD develops the notice, THA will continue to use the notice of rights they already provide to tenants per 5.2005(a)(1).
· VAWA 2013 requires HUD to adopt a model emergency transfer plan for use by PHAs, and requires HUD to establish policies and procedures under which victims of abuse requesting an emergency transfer may receive, subject to the availability of tenant protection vouchers, assistance through the tenant-based section 8 program. Before such time that HUD develops the model emergency transfer plan, THA will continue to implement our transfer plan described in THA’s admissions and continued occupancy plan or administrative plan.
Motion by: ___________________________ _____________________________
Terry Kerr, Chairman
Seconded by: _________________________ _____________________________
Alexa E. Vroman, Executive Director