An open letter to Vermont cities and towns

Governor Scott and legislative leaders created a humanitarian crisis when they allowed Vermont’s emergency motel-voucher program to end, eliminating housing for hundreds of people without adequate alternatives in place. Though lawmakers ultimately brokered a compromise to extend emergency housing support for a limited number of Vermonters, many people were left behind and much more remains to be done.

While Vermont’s cities and towns cannot be expected to bear the costs of a statewide policy failure that originates in Montpelier, they do have to respect the rights and dignity of all residents. That’s why we sent an open letter to Vermont’s municipal leaders and agencies this week to address these concerns. Find the letter below.

Now is a good time to reach out to leaders in your community—the select board, city council, town manager, police chief, and others. Refer them to our letter and urge them to extend humane and compassionate support to people experiencing homelessness, not punishment and criminalization.

Local leaders need to know that residents of their community will not tolerate inaction on this issue or further stigmatization of people living in poverty. Your municipal website or town office should have more information about how to contact your local officials directly. 

Read our "Know Your Rights" guide