Rep. García’s Safe Housing for Families Act Advances Unanimously in Financial Services Committee

June 28, 2019
Press Release
García’s first bill wins bipartisan support and is on its way to full House vote

Washington, D.C. - Representative Jesús G. “Chuy” García’s (IL-04) bill to require carbon monoxide detectors in public and publicly subsidized housing advanced out of the House Financial Services Committee this week, and it’s on its way to a full vote in the House of Representatives. The Safe Housing for Families Act, Rep. García’s first bill, was introduced earlier this year in partnership with Rep. Joe Cunningham (D-SC) and Sen. Kamala Harris (D-CA) after carbon monoxide poisoning led to the deaths of two men in South Carolina in January, followed by a couple in Michigan in February.

No one should die in public housing because of our government’s failure to protect them with the simple installation of an inexpensive carbon monoxide detector,” said Rep. García, who highlighted the story of the Michigan couple, Anthony and Gwendolyn Fleming, in urging his colleagues to support the bill. Since 2003, there have been 13 deaths from carbon monoxide poisoning in federally subsidized housing.”

“No American should die from carbon monoxide poisoning in government housing, plain and simple. I’m proud this legislation passed out of Committee, but we need to act as soon as possible to ensure that no more lives are lost,” said Rep. Cunningham.

“This is great news. I’m glad that the House Financial Services Committee has passed our legislation to address the carbon monoxide crisis in HUD-supported housing,” said Sen. Harris. “The full House and the Senate should vote on this immediately. We must take action to install carbon monoxide detectors in all public housing to ensure we avoid any more preventable deaths.”

The bill passed with unanimous support in the Financial Services Committee. Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Secretary Ben Carson has spoken favorably about the bill, which expedites and funds a proposed rule announced by Carson in April requiring carbon monoxide detectors to be installed on HUD housing. HUD has acknowledged that congressional action is needed to implement the rule change quickly.