By Miriam Raftery
February 15, 2023 (San Diego)-- San Diego County Supervisors have unanimously approved a proposal aimed at ending veterans’ homelessness. San Diego County is home to a quarter million veterans – and 8% of the homeless population countywide are veterans.
The ambitious proposal, introduced by Supervisors Nathan Fletcher and Chair Nora Vargas, will direct county staff to join county government resources with regional partners. The goal is to get every veteran off the street and onto a positive life plan.
Fletcher that while the number of homeless veterans helped the streets locally in the past four years has dropped by 30%, this isn’t enough. While it’s common to say `Thank you for your service,’ to San Diego veterans, Fletcher says that’s not enough. He states, “I think that needs to actually mean something. In this effort, that means us willing to put together a dedicated effort, a focused plan, and the accountability” to effectively end homeless in San Diego County. (View video of his full statement.)
The approval of the policy put several actions in motion, including the convening of community organizations and stakeholders, government representatives from local, state, and federal levels, and individuals with lived experience to come up with a plan.