Judge approves end to rent subsidies for the previously homeless

September 15, 2011 01:31PM

A judge has ruled that the city can stop paying rent subsidies for more than 16,000 formerly homeless families, a move that could potentially increase the city’s homeless population by 51 percent, the Huffington Post reported.

The judge decided that the city has “no ongoing obligation, contractual or otherwise, to continue the Advantage program,” which was designed to move families out of shelters and into permanent housing by providing rent subsidies for up to two years to people who have secured job,s but can’t pay afford to pay rent from their earnings alone. The decision came after a five-day civil trial this summer, the Huffington Post said.

City Homeless Services Commissioner Seth Diamond said the decision does not mean that city will abandoned the homeless.

“We will continue to move forward in supporting homeless families in their effort to gain employment and move out of shelter,” he said in a statement.

The city notified told the families in March the subsidies would no longer be issued because of state budget cuts. [HuffPo]