Mayor Bill de Blasio appointed Steven Banks as Commissioner of the New York City Human Resources Administration/Department of Social Services (HRA) in 2014. Commissioner Banks is a key leader in implementing Mayor de Blasio’s agenda to expand opportunity for more New Yorkers, address income inequality, and ensure that New Yorkers receive the benefits and assistance to which they are entitled.
In April 2016, following a comprehensive review of the City’s homelessness policies, Mayor de Blasio appointed Commissioner Banks to lead the Department of Homeless Services (DHS), in addition to HRA, as head of a joint management structure under the Department of Social Services (DSS).
Steven Banks has dedicated his entire career to improving the lives of low-income New Yorkers. Throughout his 33 years with the Legal Aid Society prior to his appointment, Banks developed an extensive track record of working productively with a unionized workforce and helping the city’s most vulnerable residents – including seniors, survivors of domestic violence, immigrants, and people living with HIV/AIDS – navigate DSS’ programs and services. He is credited with helping reach a landmark settlement with the City in 2008 over its treatment of homeless children and adults, which resulted in the establishment of a permanent enforceable right to shelter for homeless families in New York City.