To Wait List or Not: That's the Question.

The answer to whether or not states utilize a wait list for subsidy vouchers is a mixed bag. Some do, many don’t. While it provides an objective, equitable means to distribute extra vouchers if a state finds itself with more than expected, it’s not without logistical challenges.

For example, how do you even find those parents on the wait list? Often this is a transient audience and reaching out to them using more traditional information like an address or phone number can mean you fall short in connecting with them. Consider this, though: many states are using digital communications – system notifications, email and texts – to communicate with parents for things like notices of eligibility changes, renewals and more. Following the same model, electronic communications could make finding those on a waitlist feasible.

Despite its inherent challenges, a wait list does illustrate the need versus supply when it comes to targeting lawmakers for voucher funding. That alone perhaps is good enough reason to clear the hurdles of maintaining a wait list.

How has your state tackled this issue?

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