Supervisor Farrell Calls for a New 5-Year Plan to Reduce Homelessness in San Francisco

SAN FRANCISCO – At tomorrow’s Board of Supervisor meeting, Supervisor Mark Farrell will introduce legislation that calls on the City’s new Department of Homelessness and Supportive Housing to create and adopt a five-year plan to reduce homelessness in San Francisco.

SUPERVISOR MARK FARRELL CALLS FOR A NEW 5-YEAR PLAN TO REDUCE HOMELESSNESS IN SAN FRANCISCO

 

The City’s “10-Year Plan to Abolish Chronic Homelessness” sunset in 2014

 

SAN FRANCISCO – At tomorrow’s Board of Supervisor meeting, Supervisor Mark Farrell will introduce legislation that calls on the City’s new Department of Homelessness and Supportive Housing to create and adopt a five-year plan to reduce homelessness in San Francisco.

 

“The status quo on our streets is simply not acceptable, and I believe San Francisco needs a long-term, sustainable strategic vision to reduce homelessness in our City,” stated Supervisor Farrell. “Homelessness is a major issue, and I want to make sure as a City we never take our eye off the ball.”

 

In 2004, the City and County of San Francisco adopted the “10-Year Plan to Abolish Chronic Homelessness,” which served as the City’s main policy document for how it planned to address and reduce homelessness. The main goals of the “10-Year Plan” were to create 3,000 new supportive housing units and to formalize the adoption of a “housing first” strategy towards homelessness.

 

“Homelessness has been a concern in San Francisco for decades, and I believe it is an issue that needs significant long-term attention in our City,” stated Supervisor Farrell. “I applaud the Mayor’s move to consolidate every city initiative around homelessness into one department, and I am particularly excited about working with Jeff Kositsky as the new Director.”

 

Despite the City meeting the main goals of the “10-Year Plan” by creating 3,071 new units of supportive housing in ten years and adopting a “housing first” strategy – homelessness in San Francisco still persists. The number of homeless individuals counted in the 2015 San Francisco Point-In-Time Homeless Count and Survey was 6,686, which represents an increase of 250 homeless individuals since the 2013 count.

 

“I would like to see our new Department of Homelessness and Supportive Housing create a unified strategy for reducing homelessness and for our City to speak with one voice,” said Supervisor Mark Farrell. “A five-year plan will create a higher level accountability by ensuring our residents and policymakers are working diligently towards this goal.”

 

Since the sunset of the “10-Year Plan,” the City has instituted new programs, such as the widely heralded Navigation Center, and reforms, such as, the Department of Public Health standardizing objectives for supportive housing providers and the Human Services Agency implementing a new tiered system for how the agency delivers homelessness services.

 

Supervisor Farrell is specifically requesting that the creation of a new five year-plan at a minimum include: strategies and funding needs for providing housing exits for the homeless, proposals for contract reforms and improvements for current non-profit homelessness service providers, and other best known practices for reducing homelessness.

 

Despite the slight increase in homelessness in San Francisco since 2013, over 25,000 homeless people have left the streets or shelter system for permanent housing since January 2004, with the assistance of the City’s homelessness services and programs.

 

Supervisor Farrell’s legislation is expected to be voted on by the full Board of Supervisors at their June 14, 2016 meeting.

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