The homeless in the South Carolina mountains may be feeling a little better after a new bill approved by the South Carolinian legislature will provide money to help them.
The Homelessness Prevention Act of 2017, which was passed by the state legislature on Wednesday, would allow homeless individuals and families to get a $200 emergency food grant to help feed themselves and their pets during the winter months.
It would also help provide a small stipend for people to pay for their own winter coat, a snowshoe, and snow shovels.
South Carolina currently provides an emergency food voucher of $50 per person per month for individuals to receive emergency food assistance.
The bill, however, would increase the maximum food assistance amount to $200 per person.
The bill also increases the amount of time the food voucher holder can use the food aid to spend, to 60 days.
The maximum amount of food aid can be spent per person, per month, per household, or per month.
The South Carolina Department of Human Services estimates that it will take approximately 12 months to complete the cost-sharing program.
“This is really a great thing for the homeless, the vulnerable, and those people who can’t afford to go to a shelter because of the cost of rent or a mortgage,” said South Carolina Senator Jason Pappas, who sponsored the bill.
“It is really about the dignity of the homeless person.”
Pappas said that the bill has the support of the South Carolina Republican Party, which also voted for it.
“I think we’re going to have a really positive impact on the homeless and the vulnerable,” he said.
“And we will also have a positive impact for our veterans who have nowhere else to go.”