Housing and Essential Needs

A new state law established under Engrossed Substitute House Bill 2082 creates the Housing and Essential Needs program, effective November 1, 2011.

The Washington State Department of Commerce administers the Housing and Essential Needs program, which may provide non-cash housing and other assistance for some recipients of state-funded Medical Care Services (MCS)*.

Eligibility for MCS is determined by DSHS. Housing and Essential Needs services are funded through grants by the Department of Commerce to a network of local homeless and housing providers.

Assistance may include:

  • Limited rent and utilities.
  • Personal health and hygiene items.
  • Cleaning supplies.
  • Transportation.

Note: Housing and Essential Needs does not provide a monthly cash grant.

For more information and a list of local Housing and Essential Needs providers, please visit: http://www.commerce.wa.gov/Programs/housing/Homeless/Pages/ConsolidatedStateHomelessGrantProgram.aspx. (The list of local providers is linked in the right column.)

You can apply for Medical Care Services online or at your local Community Services Office.

* Recipients of the Aged, Blind, or Disabled (ABD) cash program who receive MCS will not be eligible for Housing and Essential Needs assistance.