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Healey-Driscoll Administration Launches New Partnership with Resettlement Agencies to Help Families Find Housing, Jobs

BOSTON (March 7, 2024) – PRESS RELEASE – Today the Healey-Driscoll administration is launching a new partnership with eight resettlement agencies to expand efforts to connect families living in Emergency Assistance shelters with stable housing and jobs.

The funding for this new initiative was included in the supplemental budget passed by the Legislature and signed by Governor Maura Healey in December 2023. Resettlement agencies will use this funding to support exit efforts from emergency assistance shelter by providing rehousing, employment search, and connecting families to other social services like ESOL and basic needs. The funding will allow the resettlement agencies to place migrant families into permanent housing statewide, helping them to exit shelter or the waitlist for shelter.

“Resettlement agencies have long played a critical role in helping families in Massachusetts get connected with housing, jobs and other critical resources,” said Governor Healey. “We’re grateful to the Legislature for providing this funding to expand their efforts so that we can meet the needs of families in our Emergency Assistance shelter system. Our communities and our economy will be stronger because of this partnership.”

“Resettlement agencies bring years of experience to the table of integrating families into towns and neighborhoods across Massachusetts,” said Lieutenant Governor Kim Driscoll. “They understand what it takes to get a family settled and supported so they can feel at home here, and I look forward to seeing them work with the newest residents of our state.”

“I appreciate the work these resettlement agencies continue to do for new families in Massachusetts,” said Health and Human Services Secretary Kate Walsh. “As these families look to begin the next chapter of their lives here, we will continue to welcome them and integrate them into our communities through the work of partners like the resettlement agencies, community organizations, non-profits and countless others who have shown such generosity toward our new neighbors.”

“New arrivals have fled violence and instability in their home countries, seeking safety and security in Massachusetts,” said Housing and Livable Communities Secretary Ed Augustus. “The partnership announced today between the state and resettlement agencies will support the unique needs of new arrivals, setting them up for long term success.”

“The Office for Refugee and Immigrants is proud to expand our decades long partnership with Massachusetts resettlement agencies to rehouse newly arrived immigrants” said Office for Refugees and Immigrants Executive Director Cristina Aguilera Sandoval. “We have witnessed the impact of their culturally strategic and dedicated approach to refugee resettlement all across our state.
Their staff is uniquely qualified to meet the needs of immigrants who recently chose Massachusetts as their new home and are eager to work and be a part of our communities. We look forward to working in collaboration with them in this new program and building strong pathways to housing stability.”

Resettlement agencies receiving contracts are Ascentria Community Services, Inc., Catholic Charitable Bureau of the Archdiocese of Boston, Inc., Jewish Family Service of Metrowest Massachusetts, Inc., Jewish Family Service of Western Massachusetts, Inc., Organization for Refugee and Immigrant Success, Inc., Refugee and Immigrant Assistance Center, Inc., The Catholic Charities Agency of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Springfield, MA, Inc., and The International Institute of New England, Inc.

“The resettlement agencies are looking forward to partnering with the Healey-Driscoll administration to help exit immigrant families from shelters,” said Jeff Thielman, President and CEO of the International Institute of New England. “We have decades of experience resettling refugees in the Commonwealth and look forward to applying that experience to these new arrivals. We applaud the Governor for reaching out to partners like resettlement agencies to develop creative solutions to the challenges faced by the emergency shelter system. The families we have met through the legal services and case management support we have provided are eager to find apartments and become part of communities in our state.”

Resettlement Agencies also have contracts with the Office for Refugees and Immigrants to provide legal services for obtaining work authorization and case management for families who are new arrivals to the US who are in emergency assistance shelter.

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