Yesterday, the Senate passed the Native American Housing Assistance and Self Determination Act (NAHASDA) Reauthorization bill as an attached amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act of 2023 by a vote of 86-11. NAHASDA, which has not been reauthorized since 2013, is the largest and most effective federal housing program that assists Tribal Nations in providing safe, quality and affordable housing to American Indian, Alaska Native and Native Hawaiian communities.
“Our homes are the synergy in sustaining our living systems as tribes, including economy. NAHASDA has been a successful and supportive program of that since its inception. NAHASDA is the mechanism for self-determination in tribal housing. Its enactment allows tribes to create their own Indian Housing Plan, where they can prioritize senior assisted housing, rental assistance or homeownership. Reauthorization of NAHASDA means increased programming resources and stronger accountability. Adequate housing is vital to sustainability of tribal communities. This passage represents strong bipartisanship efforts to recognize trust responsibility and further supports self-determination of tribes,” said NAIHC Executive Director Chelsea Fish.
“Native communities continue to lag behind the rest of the country in safe, affordable, and accessible housing. A simple but critically important step to combat this issue is to reauthorize and make permanent NAHASDA, and the National Congress of American Indians (NCAI) applauds its passage in the Senate,” noted NCAI Executive Director Larry Wright, Jr. “NAHASDA’s overwhelmingly bipartisan passage in the Senate is a victory for Indian Country, and now the focus must turn to the House to fully realize this victory so that we can improve the lives of those living in our communities.”
NAIHC and NCAI join all of Indian Country in thanking Senate Committee on Indian Affairs Chairman Brian Schatz (D-HI) and Vice Chair Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) for introducing amendment #1078 to reauthorize NAHASDA, and commend all those who have worked on the Senate Committee on Indian Affairs over the years for their persistent efforts to improve this legislation and for the betterment of Indian Country. NAIHC, NCAI, will continue to work together—and with other partners—to advocate for passage of NAHASDA in the House and for its full implementation across Indian Country.
About the National American Indian Housing Council:
The National American Indian Housing Council (NAIHC) is member organization that represents the unified voice of tribal housing programs across the nation. Established in 1974, NAIHC has a long-respected history of providing effective advocacy and quality training and technical assistance as well as hosting annual events that showcase best practices from tribal housing programs across the country. NAIHC advocates for tribal self-determination and improving housing conditions in tribal communities by working with tribes, tribal housing authorities, and tribally-designated housing entities (TDHEs). Learn more at www.naihc.net.
About the National Congress of American Indians:
Founded in 1944, the National Congress of American Indians (NCAI) is the oldest, largest, and most representative American Indian and Alaska Native organization in the United States. NCAI advocates on behalf of tribal governments and communities, promoting strong tribal-federal government-to-government policies. NCAI promotes an understanding among the general public regarding American Indian and Alaska Native governments, people, and rights. For more information, visit www.ncai.org.