Some formerly incarcerated people in Chicago would be permitted to live with relatives in public housing buildings under a pilot program proposed by the Chicago Housing Authority (CHA). Currently, CHA bars these individuals from living with family members in public housing.
Under the proposed program, which still needs a final OK from CHA's board and the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, 50 people with criminal records would be able to reside with relatives in CHA buildings or family members who receive subsidies for housing.
Individuals with criminal backgrounds who demonstrate that they are working to reform their lives would be allowed to take part in the initiative. The Safer Foundation, Lutheran Family Services and St. Leonard’s House would be tasked with conducting the screening process and suggesting program participants.
“This is a big step for the city of Chicago to partner with people with criminal records ... it will help them reintegrate into the communities,” Anthony Lowery with the Safer Foundation told WBEZ.
WBEZ reported that individuals convicted of sex crimes, "arson, production of methamphetamine in public housing and fraud with federal housing" would be prohibited from joining the proposed program.