Sacramento’s “New” Homeless Plan

Another effort—added to the many that have failed—to bring the homeless situation into a reality that helps the homeless and the residential and business communities suffering from the failed plans of the past and present.

In our area, a strategy helping the homeless (and local residents and business who suffer the impacts) needs to be developed that is capable of safely sheltering up to 3 to 4 thousand homeless folks a night safely distant from residential neighborhoods and business—with available transformational services—and San Antonio’s Haven for Hope program, especially the courtyard strategy they use for safe rapid shelter for large numbers, seems to offer an answer; which you can read about from their brochure at http://www.havenforhope.org/downloads/docs/H4H%20Brochure%2010-31-2016.pdf   and you can read more about Haven for Hope applicability in our area from our news release of October 26, 2018 on our News Page at http://arpps.org/news.html

Still, I, as should we all, wish them well, and this article about the new effort is from City Express.

An excerpt.

“Permanent supportive housing. Triage centers. Navigation centers. Safe camping. Safe parking. Motel conversions.

“These are some of the key strategies the City of Sacramento is utilizing to address homelessness via its Homeless Master Plan.

“The City Council on Tuesday shared district-specific updates on the master plan, including potential sites for operationalizing these strategies. The Council also discussed guiding principles for the plan as well as “good neighbor” policies that will ensure that future shelter operations successfully cohere with their respective communities.

“The master plan is intended to designate sites – and really pre-approve sites – as much as we can to create thousands of roofs, beds and spaces for people,” Mayor Darrell Steinberg said.

“Steinberg emphasized the need to create enough shelter space so the City could effectively operate under the Martin vs. The City of Boise ruling, which states that it is unconstitutional to punish people for sleeping in public places when there aren’t enough shelter beds or housing available as an alternative.

“I think it’s really important that we link the Martin vs. Boise case and the desire to regulate … the time, place and manner in which people can camp,” Steinberg said. “The only way we can do that is if we create enough capacity to be able to offer someone who is camping where we don’t want them to camp a safe place where they can camp or hopefully a place where they can have a roof over their heads.”

“Following Steinberg’s comments, Council members provided updates on the community meetings they have been holding in their districts. Council member Katie Valenzuela, who has been leading work to help campers displaced by construction on the W/X freeway, said she had identified potential locations in her district to accommodate up to 2,000 people in tiny homes, triage centers and safe camping.

“Council member Jeff Harris said his community meetings had been useful to not only inform the public of what the City is working to accomplish, but what the City already had accomplished as well.

“It was enlightening, I would say, for all of my constituents to understand that we have, for instance, housed 2,700 people last year,” Harris said. “That’s an astounding number and quite a tremendous win. But I worked hard to point out that this is a numbers game. Because of COVID, more people fell into homelessness than we could address.”

“The Council will review specific sites in each district at workshop meetings scheduled for April 13-May 4. The final vote for the master plan likely will occur in June.”

Retrieved March 28, 2021 from City Council provides district-specific updates on homeless master plan – City Express (sacramentocityexpress.com)

About David H Lukenbill

I am a native of Sacramento, as are my wife and daughter. I am a consultant to nonprofit organizations, and have a Bachelor of Science degree in Organizational Behavior and a Master of Public Administration degree, both from the University of San Francisco. We live along the American River with two cats and all the wild critters we can feed. I am the founding president of the American River Parkway Preservation Society and currently serve as the CFO and Senior Policy Director. I also volunteer as the President of The Lampstand Foundation, a nonprofit organization I founded in 2003.
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