Massachusetts Rental Voucher Program

At a Glance:

Location: Massachusetts

Date: 2005

Vital Condition: Basic Needs for Health and Safety, Humane Housing, Lifelong Learning, Meaningful Work and Wealth

Determinants of Health: healthcare access, education, employment, meaningful work and wealth, affordable housing, housing, affordable housing

Affected Population: Children and Youth, People Experiencing Homelessness, People Living in Poverty, People with Chronic and Multiple Chronic Health Conditions

Research Methods: Literature review, stakeholder_interviews

Community Types: suburban

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The HIA addressed the health implications of a housing assistance and homelessness prevention program called the Massachusetts Rental Voucher Program (MVRP), as well as proposed changes to the program for FY2006. The HIA: 1) looked specifically at program components like time limits, work requirements, eligibility determination and required tenant rent contributions; and 2) studied the health effects on children through changes in, for example, food security and exposures to health hazards in poor quality housing, such as lead paint and mold. The report recommended that the Department of Community and Housing Development collect and track data on MRVP enrollees so that the influence and impact of the program could be directly monitored.


HIA authors provided testimony at the legislative hearings on the program; the evidence they provided was crucial to the state’s decision to not move forward with the proposed changes to the program.

This Health Impact Assessment Report first appeared in The Cross-Sector Toolkit for Health. The Cross-Sector Toolkit for Health was originally developed by the Health Impact Project, formerly a collaboration of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and The Pew Charitable Trusts. The creation of this resource was supported by a grant from the Health Impact Project. The views expressed are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Pew Charitable Trusts, or the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.

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