homeless

READER’S EDITORIAL: SHOULD WE LIMIT FREEDOM OF PEOPLE WHO CHOOSE TO BE HOMELESS?

By Steve Goble, El Cajon Councilman

January 14, 2020 (El Cajon) -- This has lots of good information. Thank you for this article, “Cities Should Act on Homelessness or Face Lawsuits, Newsom Task Force Says.”   

What I don't see the state officials addressing yet is, "What about a person's freedom to not live under a roof?"

The Council meeting today will have a comprehensive discussion on our efforts and results to-date on programs addressing homelessness.

CITIES SHOULD ACT ON HOMELESSNESS OR FACE LAWSUITS, NEWSOM TASK FORCE SAYS

By Matt Levin and Jackie Botts, CalMatters

 Sacramento Mayor Darrell Steinberg, left, and Los Angeles County Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas, who are leading Newsom's task force, have been pushing for some legal leverage to force action on homelessness. Photo by Anne Wernikoff for CalMatters

 

January 13, 2020 (Sacramento) -- Recommendations by Gov. Gavin Newsom's task force on homelessness in California propose a legally enforceable 'mandate to end homelessness' on the November ballot, echo the governor's request for more funding and call for a homelessness czar. 

Declaring that moral persuasion and economic incentives aren’t working to bring people in from the sidewalks, Gov. Gavin Newsom’s task force on homelessness called Monday for a “legally enforceable mandate” that would force municipalities and the state to house the growing number of homeless Californians.

BALLOT MEASURE PROPOSES MANDATORY TREATMENT AND HELP FOR HOMELESS WHO COMMIT CERTAIN CRIMES

neighbor without a homeBy Miriam Raftery
 
Photo by Dave Myers: A homeless person sleeping outside City Hall in La Mesa.
 
January 6, 2019 (San Diego’s East County) -- A proposed ballot measure titled California’s Compassionate Intervention aims to strike a balance between criminalizing homelessness, deemed by many including some courts, as too harsh, and ignoring the impacts of crimes committed by homeless people on communities – an approach the author sees as too lenient. 
 
Mike Gatto, a Los Angeles attorney and former Democratic Assemblyman, believes his initiative “radically changes the state’s approach to homelessness.”

SUPREME COURT LETS STAND RULING THAT ALLOWS HOMELESS TO SLEEP IN PARKS AND ON SIDEWALKS IF THERE IS NO LOCAL SHELTER SPACE

By Miriam Raftery

January 2, 2020 (Washington D.C.) –The U.S. Supreme Court declined last month to hear an appeal of a ruling by the 9th Circuit U.S. District Court of Appeals, which held that cities and counties cannot arrest homeless people for sleeping in outdoor public spaces if a jurisdiction has failed to provide space in shelters.

San Diego County and dozens of other local governments had joined together to argue that the case should be overturned, arguing that the decision limits cities’ abilities to maintain public health and safety. In San Diego, a 2017 hepatitis-A outbreak was tied to homelessness.

But the 9th circuit held that a city ordinance banning camping in public places by the homeless “violates the 8th Amendment insofar as it imposes criminal sanctions against homeless individuals for sleeping outdoors on public property, when no alternative is available to them.”

San Diego had more than 8,100 people homeless countywide as of a January 1, 2019 count, but 27,850 people used homeless services countywide last year, Voice of San Diego reports. California, which has one of the best year-round climates, is home to around half of the nation’s homeless population.

VIDEO OF THE MONTH: MAYOR WELLS ON SAX AT BENEFIT TO HELP HOMELESS

 

Video by Paul Kruze

November 26, 2019 (El Cajon) -- El Cajon Mayor Bill Wells played saxophone and sang at the East County Transitional Living Center's fundraising dinner on November 14, 2019 at the Shadow Hills Community Church Center, accompanied by Jonni Glaser on saxophone.

SHERIFF ESTABLISHES HOMELESS ASSISTANCE RESOURCE TEAM (HART)

By Miriam Raftery, East County Magazine
 
July 12, 2019 (San Diego) -- The San Diego County Sheriff's deputies have been collaborating with community partners to provide outreach to the homeless. Now, the Sheriff's Department has assigned a team of deputies to work exclusively in cooperation with county governmental and non-governmental organizations on homeless outreach and services throughout unincorporated areas. 

HOW SHOULD COUNTY SPEND FEDERAL FUNDS IN YOUR COMMUNITY? SHARE YOUR VIEWS IN THESE PUBLIC FORUMS

 

East County News Service 

July 5, 2019 (San Diego’s East County) -- “San Diego County needs your input on how best to invest federal funds in our low- to moderate-income communities,” says Supervisor Dianne Jacob. 

The County is holding a series of public forums at county libraries, each one hour, including these East County locations, to hear your ideas:

  • Alpine, July 8 at 12:30 p.m.
  • Ramona, July 10 at 1:30 p.m.
  • Julian, July 12 at 11:30 a.m.
  • El Cajon, July 22, 3:30 p.m.
  • Borrego Springs, July 24 at 11:30 a.m.
  • Spring Valley on July 29 at 11:30 a.m.

You can also share your thoughts and suggestions in an online survey: https://www.sandiegocounty.gov/sdhcd/ 

SAN DIEGO’S PROPOSED NEW VEHICLE HABITATION ORDINANCE DRAWS OPPOSITION; PROTEST PLANNED TUESDAY

 

Update May 15, 2019: The San Diego City Council has voted to approve the new vehicle habitation ordinance.

By Miriam Raftery

May 13, 2019 (San Diego) – After a federal judge found San Diego’s vehicle habitation ordinance unconstitutional and issued an injunction to halt its enforcement of the ban on sleeping in vehicles, a new ordinance backed by Mayor Kevin Faulconer has been passed 3-1 by a committee and forwarded to the full city council, where a vote is expected on Tuesday, May 14 at 2 p.m.  

 

HOMELESS COUNT SHOWS 6% DROP COUNTYWIDE: HOMELESS RISES IN RAMONA AND EL CAJON BUT DROPS IN SPRING VALLEY

 

Updated with corrected figures for El Cajon, where homelessness rose and a higher percentage are without shelter than last year.

By Miriam Raftery

May 2, 2019 (San Diego’s East County) – For the second year in a row, the annual Point-in-Time homeless count for 2019 found a 6% drop in the number of homeless people living on the streets and in shelters across San Diego County.  The count found a 1% increase in those who are sheltered and a 10% decrease in those left unsheltered.

REALTORS TRADE GROUP HONORED FOR HELPING EAST COUNTY HOMELESS POPULATION

 

 

East County News Service

Photo:  (from left to right) Tracy Morgan Hollingworth, Joe Mackey, Robert Calloway, Kay LeMenager, Carol Lewis, Anna Marie Piconi Snyder.

April 26, 2019 (El Cajon) – The Pacific Southwest Association of Realtors (PSAR), a real estate trade group for San Diego-area realtors, recently presented a $5,000 check to the San Diego East County Chamber of Commerce Foundation to help pay for a website featuring resources to assist homeless people in the East County.

SAN DIEGO JEWISH ACADEMY ATTEMPTS TO BREAK A GUINNESS WORLD RECORD WHILE SUPPORTING THE SAN DIEGO HOMELESS COMMUNITY

 
 
East County News Service
 
March 26, 2019 (San Diego) -- Students, faculty and parents from the San Diego Jewish Academy will attempt to break the Guinness World Record for the most sandwiches assembled in three minutes on April 1, and will donate the assembled sandwiches to San Diego’s Alpha Project, an organization dedicated to helping the homeless change their lives and achieve self-sufficiency. 

LA MESA SEEKS VOLUNTEERS FOR CITIZENS COMMITTEE ON HOMELESSNESS

 

 

East County News Service

March 20, 2019 (La Mesa) - The City of La Mesa is seeking volunteers for an ad hoc citizen committee on homelessness.  If you're passionate about homeless issues and want to make a positive difference in the community, you are encouraged to sign up.

RIVERBED PLACE: HOMELESS IN LAKESIDE





By Teeamarrie Lewis

February 20, 2019 (Lakeside)-- Hello, my name is Teea and I have been homeless in Lakeside for the past three years but have lived here for 30 years. I am not here by choice, I am clean, looking for work with no success but I have seen more problems in this community than they want to let on. In my years of being a homeless citizen I have gained family, lost loved ones, and have lost almost all hope for the human race. When it comes to compassion it seems that there is more stereo types made than there is a realistic version of what is really going on. I am here to try to debunk the stereo type of the Lakeside homeless community.

BOARD VOTES TO REQUEST $125 MILLION TO HELP HOMELESS

 

 

By José A. Álvarez, County of San Diego Communications Office

February 12, 2019 (San Diego) - The County Board of Supervisors today voted to allow the Health and Human Services Agency to apply for and receive about $125 million to help people with serious mental illness and who are homeless or at risk of losing their home.

LANDLORDS NEEDED TO RENT TO VETERANS AND OTHER HOMELESS PEOPLE

 

Rorick “Rory” Luepton is looking for landlords.

No, he is not moving, nor does he need a new place to live.

MILLIONS POURING INTO EAST COUNTY TO ADDRESS HOMELESSNESS

 

Next meeting set for Sept. 6 in Lakeside as community seeks solutions to its growing homelessness problem

By Ana Nita

View video here:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TOWE1HAQS7c&feature=youtu.be

August 29, 2018 (San Diego’s East County) -- Eric J. Lund, Director of the East County Homeless Task Force and CEO of the East County Chamber of Commerce, announced last week that East County will receive $2 million out of the $18.8 million in state funding for San Diego County to solve the homelessness problem.

NEW PROGRAM FOR HOMELESS WHO FREQUENTLY USE ERS

 

June 11, 2018 (San Diego) - The County is looking for 1,049 chronically homeless people who frequently use emergency rooms for medical treatment, resulting in high Medi-Cal costs.

These people, identified in 2016, are being sought to be a part of Whole Person Wellness, a County program that will help them find a home and give them access to behavioral and physical health services, saving millions in Medi-Cal costs.

12.7% OF COUNTY’S HOMELESS ARE IN EAST COUNTY, WHERE MOST REMAIN UNSHELTERED

 

By Miriam Raftery

May 21, 2018 (San Diego’s East County) – The 2018 Point in Time “We All Count” report on homelessness in our region reveals that 12.7% of San Diego County’s homeless population is in East County.  While El Cajon has made progress toward sheltering its homeless people, no such progress has been made in the unincorporated areas or most East County cities.

SALVATION ARMY GETS $50 MILLION RADY DONATION TO HELP SAN DIEGO HOMELESS

 

By Chris Jennewein, credit to Times of San Diego, a member of the San Diego Online News Network

Photo:  Ernest and Evelyn Rady at the Salvation Army’s Door of Hope in Linda Vista. Photo by Chris Jennewein

January 29, 2018 (San Diego) - Philanthropists Ernest and Evelyn Rady announced Monday an unprecedented $50 million donation to The Salvation Army to help homeless individuals and families in San Diego.

PAW IT FORWARD: DONATE COATS, SWEATERS FOR PETS OF THE HOMELESS

 

Get an extra pet sweater or coat, or donate an old one to County Animal Services’ “Paw It Forward” campaign. These “creature comforts” will go to pets of people experiencing homelessness.

PROTESTS, PETITION SEEK TO OVERTURN EL CAJON’S BAN ON FEEDING HOMELESS IN PARKS

 

Update: Hear our interview with Dash McTavish from Food Not Bombs, a group planning to feed the homeless Nov. 25 in defiance of  El Cajon's ban.  Click the audio link to hear the interviewed originally aired on KNSJ.

By Miriam Raftery

November 12, 2017 (El Cajon) – Protest rallies on November 19th and 25th are being organized to oppose the El Cajon City Council’s unanimous decision to outlaw feeding the homeless and other city-owned properties, after previously banning camping in parks, sleeping on sidewalks and panhandling.  An online petition also calls on Mayor Bill Wells and the City Council to overturn the ban.  

Audio: 

Interview with Dash McTavish, Food Not Bombs

THANKSGIVING TURKEYS NEEDED FOR HOMELESS IN EL CAJON

 

Source:  ECTLC

November 13, 2017 (El Cajon) -- The East County Transitional Living Center is in need of fresh or frozen turkeys to feed its more than 400 residents on Thanksgiving Day.  The residents are recovering from homelessness or addiction.

KALASHO OBJECTS TO CITIZEN CALLING FOR HIS RESIGNATION; EL CAJON COUNCIL BANS FEEDING OF HOMELESS IN PARKS OVER HEPATITS CONCERNS

 

By Paul Kruze

November 1, 2017 (El Cajon) -- El Cajon’s City Council on Tuesday voted unanimously to ban feeding of the homeless in public places due to hepatitis concerns, fill a vacancy on its veterans’ commission, and approve a residential housing development. But the most contentious moments came during an impassioned plea from a citizen calling for Councilmember Ben Kalasho to resign, over objections of Kalasho, who sought to silence the resident from speaking out.

BROWN SIGNS BILL TO LET SAN DIEGO WAIVE BUILDING CODES FOR THREE YEARS TO PROVIDE SHELTER FOR HOMELESS

 

By Miriam Raftery

October 19, 2017 (San Diego) – Governor Jerry Brown has signed Assembly Bill 932 authorizing suspension of state and local building standards for three years upon declaration of a shelter crisis in specified areas, including the City of San Diego, in order to create homeless shelters on an emergency basis.

HOMELESS SAN DIEGANS FILE CLASS ACTION SUIT AGAINST CITY OF SAN DIEGO

 

 

By Miriam Raftery

July 18, 2017 (San Diego) – Ten homeless San Diegans have filed a class action against the city of San Diego, challenging citations targeting the homeless as unconstitutional.

Homelessness in the city spiked 10% over the past year, according to the January 2017 Point in Time homeless count. Most of those—5,612—were unsheltered. There are not enough beds and local shelters have long waits. San Diego is also the fourth least affordable city in the nation for housing, making the situation even more bleak for homeless people here.

HEAR OUR INTERVIEW: EAST COUNTY REGIONAL TASK FORCE ON HOMELESS CHAIR ERIC LUND

 

By Miriam Raftery

July 15, 2017 (El Cajon) -- Recently, we sat down with Eric Lund, chair of the East County Regional Task Force on the Homeless  and president of the San Diego East County Chamber of Commerce, for an interview that originally aired on KNSJ radio. 

He shared details about the Task Force's vision and proposals for a compassion approach to helping the homeless obtain housing and services, while also keeping communities clean and safe for residents and businesses.

Listen now by clicking the audio link.

Audio: 

EL CAJON CITY COUNCIL UNANIMOUSLY APPROVES HOMELESS AID PROJECT; KALASHO AGAIN SPARKS CONTROVERSY OVER DISPUTED COMMENTS TO LOCAL ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT GROUP

 

By Paul Kruze

July 7, 2017 (El Cajon) -- In a unanimous 4-0 vote (with Councilmember Bob McClellan absent), the El Cajon City Council has approved a major measure to address homelessness in El Cajon as part of an initiative developed by the East County Homeless Task Force (ECHTF.org). The measure includes an expenditure of $168,000 by the city.

COMMUNITY FORUM WITH EL CAJON MAYOR WELLS AND POLICE CHIEF DAVIS ADDRESSES CITIZENS’ CONCERNS ON HOMELESS ENCAMPMENTS

 

Hear audio of the meeting: 

http://www.mediafire.com/file/vf31iozwi183wxj/ElCajonHomelessForum1.mp3

By Paul Kruze

June 30, 2017 (El Cajon) -- Spurred on by a mentally ill homeless woman who made her street home in front of a shuttered El Cajon motel on East Main Street earlier this month and numerous homeless individuals settling in central El Cajon, some 50 El Cajon residents gathered in the Community Room at the El Cajon Police Department for a town hall meeting last Monday night hosted by El Cajon Mayor Bill Wells and Chief of Police Jeff Davis.

SUPERVISORS TO CONSIDER THREE IDEAS TO HELP THE HOMELESS

 

By Miriam Raftery

June 13, 2017 (San Diego) -- The Board of Supervisors will look at ideas next week designed to help get the homeless into homes.  County Supervisors Ron Roberts and Dianne Jacob unveiled the three initiatives to spur the building, renovation and acquisition of affordable housing and stem the growing tide of homelessness.

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