PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — The Rhode Island Department of Housing is expanding its capacity to address the state’s housing crisis as it pertains to affordability and homelessness.

In total, the Housing Department is planning on opening 21 new full-time positions. Five of those new positions were posted last week.

The new positions were made possible through funding set aside in Gov. Dan McKee’s state budget.

R.I. Housing Secretary Stefan Pryor said three of the recently posted positions will specifically address homelessness.

Those positions, he said, will be tasked with creating programs to assist homeless individuals and seek out new shelter and permanent housing opportunities.

Pryor said the state needs more shelters to assist those who need place to live.

“We know there are still hundreds of Rhode Islanders who are living outdoors and do not have a roof over their heads,” Pryor said.

The new positions will also look into ways to expand low-income housing across the state, according to Pryor.

“I’m talking about housing at every price point,” Pryor said. “I’m talking up and down the levels of housing costs because we need new affordable housing, but we also need housing throughout the market.”

Pryor said more positions will be posted next month.

Those interested in applying can do so online. More information regarding the first five new positions can be found by clicking here.