Emergency assistance in Multnomah County.

Emergency assistance is offered in Multnomah County Oregon for people who have no other options available to them. These financial assistance programs can help with bills, rent, housing, and other needs, and aid is only offered as a last resort.

The county provides money for several services and emergency assistance programs that aren’t covered by any other source, whether government or private. The Multnomah County programs are formally known as the Emergency Services Safety Net Programs, and details are below.

Rent and Housing Assistance – Programs are available for people with disabilities and seniors who are at risk of homelessness, people who are currently homeless, or who currently reside in unsafe housing. People at risk of eviction or homelessness may qualify for emergency rent help as well.

Prescription Drug Assistance can be provided for people with out-of-pocket Medicare Part D costs or uninsured seniors, or for people with medical disabilities or a serious condition who are in the waiting period for federal government Medicare.

For people who do not qualify for Medicaid, then the Multnomah Project Independence (MPI) is available to people who are 18-59 years old and have disabilities. The applicant also needs to live in their own homes, and need in-home services but don’t meet the government Medicaid guidelines.

The Multnomah County Special Needs assistance program may provide for funds for durable medical expenses necessary to stabilize a qualified low income person’s medical condition or other life circumstance.

Housing Assistance in Multnomah County – The DDSD Housing Assistance program receives grant funding from the Portland Housing Authority. This will in effect provide a limited amount of short-term emergency housing and rent assistance to people who need help paying rent and who are faced with an eviction. The goal is to prevent homelessness across Multnomah County Oregon. This rent and housing assistance is limited to $600, funds are available once per fiscal year, and money is generally offered for rent, security deposits, or motel and hotel voucher assistance.





Another resource known as Shelter Plus Care (SPC) grant is also part of the emergency Housing Assistance program. This service provides on-going rental assistance to previously homeless families that contain a disabled head of household. The program is small by nature, and only a few dozen people can get help. It is oftentimes closed with a waiting list, but it is another option. The agency is also a referring agency to the Bridges to Housing program, which provides intensive services and housing subsidies to high need homeless families or people on verge of eviction.

Housing Counseling is provided too. For many people with disabilities and seniors, finding an affordable and safe place to live in Multnomah County is difficult.

Low income housing is offered by the Housing Authority of Portland, which is also known as Home Forward. The housing authority owns and operates low income and public housing apartments for city of Portland Oregon and Multnomah County residents.

The Section 8 housing voucher program is also administered by Home Forward. The government agency also oversees privately managed and affordable housing apartments. The waiting list for section 8 vouchers, which is a government funded public assistance program in which Home Forward pays a portion of rent, is currently extensive, and this program is often closed to applicants as well due to demand.

Another agency that is often referred to is Housing Connections. They are a great source of information for apartments and places to live in the region, and they are the so called one-stop affordable and special needs housing database for the Portland Metro area.

Dial Multnomah County Aging & Disability Service's at 503.988.3646 or dial DDSD Housing Assistance at 503-988-6272 to learn about these various housing, rent, and emergency assistance programs.



By Jon McNamara

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