The San Diego County Board of Supervisors voted unanimously Tuesday to declare homelessness a public well being disaster, directing the county chief administrative officer to work with metropolis governments and the Regional Job Drive on Homelessness on a regional strategy to tackling the problem.
A few of CAO Helen Robbins-Meyer’s different tasks will embody:
— updating the board on regional efforts and suggestions to the county’s Framework for Ending Homelessness within the first quarter of 2023, together with a complete overview of providers and housing provided to these experiencing homelessness;
— figuring out potential financial impacts to the county and investments wanted to considerably cut back homelessness;
— discovering housing alternatives and providers, and making suggestions primarily based on an evaluation by Homebase, a non-profit group;
— creating a plan for enhanced information assortment, evaluating the county’s homeless providers and packages, and establishing different strategies, together with 24-hour entry to social staff or educated professionals; and
— permitting the Well being and Human Providers Company director to analysis and apply for different funding alternatives.
Officers have mentioned the dearth of inexpensive housing for many years, they usually say the disaster has been exacerbated lately by the COVID-19 pandemic and persevering with low wages relative to inflation.
Board Vice Chairwoman Nora Vargas, who proposed the declaration with Chairman Nathan Fletcher, stated she did so with “a very heavy coronary heart” and stated it was “actually one thing I want we didn’t need to do.”
Vargas added that as a Southwestern School trustee, she knew of scholars sleeping of their automobiles.
“Once we as a county come collectively and provide assets, folks reap the benefits of them,” she stated.
Making homelessness a high precedence will permit the county to overview its present packages and “actually take into consideration options that impression our communities,” she stated.
Fletcher stated public officers know that homelessness “can’t be ignored” and everybody has to work towards lowering it, together with the 18 cities positioned in San Diego County.
Supervisor Jim Desmond stated he was glad to see a region-wide strategy, however stated a lot work is required to sort out the disaster.
“If we don’t take care of it, there’s going to be larger value sooner or later,” Desmond added.
Up to date at 12:45 p.m Sept. 27, 2022
–Metropolis Information Providers