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Buffalo mayor headed to White House event on homeless veterans

ALBANY – Buffalo Mayor Byron W. Brown is being invited to the White House on Monday, along with a couple dozen other mayors from around the country, for their cities’ work on reducing homelessness among veterans.

The Veterans Day event with the mayors is being hosted by First Lady Michelle Obama and Vice President Joseph Biden.

“Over a year ago, the First Lady issued a challenge to us through the U.S. Conference of Mayors to work with partners in our community on initiatives to effectively end veteran homelessness. The city of Buffalo responded to the challenge,” Brown said, on Friday evening.

The mayor said the city worked with non-profit groups, including the Homeless Alliance of Western New York, to create a system in which a homeless veteran is provided housing within 90 days from when the city is notified.

He said the program includes setting aside specific units in some affordable housing developments to take in homeless veterans.

“We can definitely state that if we identify a homeless veteran we can get that person into housing within 90 days,” Brown said.

The event Monday comes after several federal agencies several weeks ago recognized Buffalo, along with Niagara Falls, Lockport and Tonawanda, for devising programs to meet federal goals for getting homeless veterans into immediate and longer term housing.

Brown said he’s been told no more than about two dozen city leaders were invited to the White House event.

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