This act asserts that the legislature finds that postsecondary credentials are essential for WA state residents’ ability to attain jobs with proper salaries and advancement opportunities. The legislature also states that the experience of homelessness as a postsecondary student is associated with an 8-10% reduction in the probability of later credential attainment or enrollment. Therefore, the legislature finds that efforts to promote credential attainment should be expanded to consider students’ living conditions and to alleviate the burden that experiencing homelessness imposes on students.
A new section is added to RCW 28B.50 and RCW 28B.10 to include that each college district and each four-year institution of higher education must develop a capital project plan by July 1st, 2021, to renovate or rehabilitate an existing building or facility to provide the following accommodations:
- Laundry facilities;
- Storage units;
- Showers; and
These renovations must be completed by July 1st, 2023, and also requires for the college/4-year higher education institution to provide free or reduced-price meals to reduce food insecurity if the facility implements a culinary program.
Additionally, these new sections also specify that the college district/4-year higher education institution must attempt to engage with the local housing authority to provide tenant-based rental assistance programs in order to address student homelessness and increase housing options.