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Wyden Urges Biden to Remove Executive Director of US Interagency Council on Homelessness

February 5, 2021 by Sean Trambley
Dr. Robert Marbut

WASHINGTON – This week, in a letter to President Joe Biden, Senator Ron Wyden, D-Ore., requested the removal of Dr. Robert Marbut from his post as the executive director of the United States Interagency Council on Homelessness.

In the letter, Wyden asserts that Dr. Marbut, a holdover appointee from the Trump administration, has repeatedly stonewalled the progression of permanent housing solutions for Americans, failed to work with local leaders and service providers, and has allowed important partnerships to decay.

“It is high time the federal government takes the crisis of homelessness seriously and urgently,” Wyden wrote. “The executive director of USICH has the opportunity to oversee, under your leadership, unprecedented investment in the services, supports and reforms so badly needed across the nation by people experiencing homelessness and their communities.”

Wyden also recommended appointing a more qualified person who’s dedicated to ending homelessness in a compassionate and evidence-based manner, as the USICH is responsible for collaborating with 19 agencies to manage the federal response to the nation’s homelessness crisis.

“I share your admirable goal of ending this brutal symptom of America’s shortage of affordable housing, rampant inequality and lack of access to mental and physical health care,” Wyden wrote.  “I look forward to working with your administration to address the causes of homelessness, because I believe that shelter is a fundamental human right. In the world’s wealthiest country, no one should be forced to bear the cold of winter or heat of summer without a roof over their head.”

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