More and more veterans are returning to Revere from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan every day, and unlike in previous wars, those soldiers are older and returning to existing families.
There are no baby boomers, nor quick marriages.
Most are coming back to wives and children they had long before they left for combat.
And so, when they come back, they need housing and Revere Housing Authority (RHA) officials and board members told U.S. Sen. Scott Brown last Friday that they are getting their hands tied by state regulations.
RHA Executive Director Linda Shaw said that they have more than 100 units that were built after World War II specifically for military families. However, over the years those military restrictions were watered down and other priorities jumped ahead.
“Right now, preference goes to domestic violence victims, the homeless in shelters or the disabled,” said Shaw. “We want to get those 100 units going back to a veterans preference because we have a lot of vets coming back from war and we’re having to turn them away. I don’t like to do that.”
RHA Board member George Anzuoni said they have been harping on the issue for over a year, telling anyone in the government about what they’re up against. To date, he said, only Brown has responded to listen.
“This is why we’re here today,” said Anzuoni. “This isn’t something new. We’ve been pushing this since last August. It doesn’t even need state legislation. The governor can just rescind it and correct the problem.”