simmons 030524SPRINGFIELD – State Senator Mike Simmons advanced legislation to increase access to affordable housing for more youth experiencing homelessness who may be struggling with mental health or substance abuse. 

“The intersectionality of recurring substance use, mental health struggles and access to affordable housing is very real,” said Simmons (D-Chicago). “Providing support services to at-risk adolescents as young as age 18 is much needed.”

The Housing is Recovery pilot program offers affordable housing using a bridge rental subsidy combined with access to recovery support services or treatment for individuals struggling with mental health and substance abuse.


Senate Bill 3297 will lower the age of eligibility for the Housing is Recovery pilot program from 21 years old to 18 years old.

“Our community partners and constituents have told us many youth age out of programs and services when they turn 18 and have to wait in limbo for additional support services until they turn 21, leading to even worse outcomes such as further substance abuse and incarceration,” said Simmons. “By lowering the eligibility age to 18, my hope is to see our youth avoid this cycle.”

Senate Bill 3297 passed the Senate Health and Human Services Committee on Tuesday.