Sunday, August 20, 2017

SR Council Lobbying

To Do
Listen to City Council video and take notes about what the council people said – Gregory
·       Rogers – Diversion supported for mental health and substance use, Portapotties, Disruptive not homeless, Impact on Jobs & youth.  Smoking, graffiti – Yes.  Sleeping in cars?  Alcohol & Drugs – services!  Restorative – SF QOL, More nuanced manner.
·       Coursey – Homeless Court?, not the only tool being used, housing not jail, use it sparingly, alternative outcomes.
·       Sawyer – Police Training?, Portapotties, What have we accomplished?, data quarterly.
·       Tibbetts – Bench Warrants for Infractions, Parked Cars, Restrooms, CHAP for residential,
·       Combs – Concerned about costs, Homeless Court, Data – Impact on Homeless, Beds Available, especially for ADA, PTSD, DV, MH.  Concerned about arresting for use of public spaces hen no private paces are available.  Trouble charging for sleeping, urinating when no facilities available.  Concerned for 12yr old boys, PTSD, DV, MH, Fathers w/Daughters.  No total costs, diversion, and data.
·       Olivares – Coordination being accomplished lately, prevention, authorized tool, tracking, transparency, point of contact for referrals,
·       Tom – Rules help us share the space, good police, caring, ending instead of just managing

E-mail Kelli and David to ask if they are going to write a better report for the next council meeting or simply present the MOU, what is the timeline for this to return to the council – Eileen

Analyze the City’s Press Release on Homeless Hill – Adrienne

Detail the money spent by the city on homelessness – Gregory
·       (Costs of Homelessness by SR Report, drawn from the 2017-18 Homeless Service Contract – HOST, 2017-2018 Homeless Service Contract – Sam Jones Shelter & Winter Shelter, adopted by the City Council on June 10,2017, and the First Amendment to the Sam Jones Shelter contract, - proposed for adoption on August 29th)

Expense Categories HOST Sam Jones Wntr Shltr Total
Salaries & Benefits 184,000 745624 0 929,624
Utilities 52000 0 52,000
Program Support Fees 110862 110,862
Technology & Communication 1000 4000 0 5,000
Supplies 99425 0 99,425
Food 0 0
Storage Costs 6000 0 6,000
Transportation 0 0
Conservation Crew 20000 20,000
Safe Shelter 200000 200,000
Insurance 5000 5,000
Miscellaneous Expense 26803 0 26,803
Administrative Support 10000 0 10,000
Trailer Workers 29700 29,700
Trailer Csts 21750 20000 41,750
Total 466,450 1,069,714 0 1,536,164
Sam Jones includes 188-beds & Mobile Shower  

Read the Homeless Collective Report and the WRAP report and take notes -- Pat
Santa Rosa Homeless Collective Notes
After reviewing the SRHC web page, and their following documents:  Overview, Workgroup 5 Accountability report of 3/29, and the Work Group 4 and 5 meeting notes posted (this is the only documentation available I could locate), I have the following questions:
1.    Although the Overview lists Public and private agency stakeholders, there is no indication of who is on the Steering Committee, or who is representing each agency.  Can we get this information?  Although the Overview mentions that SRHC is a grassroots organization, there appears to be no participation by the homeless, homeless advocacy groups, other citizens, or neighborhood organizations.  Can we get clarification on current citizen and organization membership and participation?
2.    What are the charters and current status of work of Workgroups 1-3 and the ongoing agendas for Workgroups 4 & 5? See below for Workgroup summary.
3.    What is the “continuous communication” plan indicated in the overview? And how can interested stakeholders and citizens follow the work of the group?

Goal 5 of the Overview speaks to: Develop processes of system accountability consistent with Goals 1-4. The Accountability Workgroup 3/29 Reports that The purpose of the Accountability Workgroup was to research, analyze, and recommend best practices to hold the service system accountable to ensuring that frequent utilizers of the criminal justice and emergency response system are served, and to identify the portion of those who are service resistant and how their actions might negatively impact the community, including others who are experiencing homelessness.
1.    There is no indication of authorship of the Workgroup 5  3/29 report. Who participated in this report?  Why was the focus changed in the way it was to focus on criminal justice responses?
2.    There was no documentation of “best practices” or evidence-based  research to support the recommendations in the 3/29 report.  Can it be produced?
3.    Will the Workgroup continue to develop policies and procedure recommendations for the Jail, District Attorney, Probation, City Attorney, etc. to address this population?
4.   Is the Accountability Workgroup going to work on accountability as described in their Overview? 
SRHC Goals and Workgroups:

GOAL 1 – Support Every Individual in Acquiring Permanent Shelter

GOAL 2 – Support the Development of Individual Financial Capacity to Acquire and Retain Permanent Shelter

GOAL 3 – Build a Strong Collaborative That Supports and Enhances All Efforts on Behalf of the Homeless

GOAL 4 - Disseminate Accurate, Detailed Information on Factors Leading to, and Best Practices to Eradicate, Homelessness and its Impacts

GOAL 5 – Develop processes of system accountability consistent with Goals 1-4
·       Workgroup 1: Permanent Housing for those who are experiencing homelessness
·       Workgroup 2: Homelessness Diversion and Housing Retention
·       Workgroup 3: System Collaboration and Coordination
·       Workgroup 4: Public Education and Communication
·       Workgroup 5: Accountability

Make the first round of appointments – Pat

Set up teams of 2-3 for each appointment.  One person should mostly take notes.

Talking Points – Questions
We will focus our conversation in these areas, without trying to get all these questions answered. Different questions are a better fit for different council people.

1.  Accountability for this change
--Determination to get specific cost and efficacy—do the Council members have that now and/or want it after this change is passed?
--What is the measure of success?  What are your expectations if you pass this measure?  What problem are you trying to solve?  What evidence have you gotten that this change will solve these problems?  What impact will this have on homeless people?  We need a survey of their reaction to this proposal?

2.  What are the questions you want answered by Staff?
--The “Justice” question.  If you want diversion and restorative justice to be the main outcomes of this change, how will that be implemented?  What will you do to monitor that that outcome?
--The “money” question:  How do you reconcile housing 50 people at a cost of $1.2-4 million, and then putting 700-950 people in jeopardy.  (950 reflects research that shows approx. 25% of Californian homeless people are uncounted)  What are you willing to spend on this new enforcement effort?
--The “Data” question:  [Gerry says we need transparent baseline data before we can measure any success—find out what he means specifically]  Are the number of infractions for so called homeless offenses changing over time?  Increasing?  Decreasing?
--The “Contract” question:  Look at the past quarterly reports from Catholic Charities. ($3 million for housing 100 people)  Ask if they are willing to have ‘outcome-based contracts, rather than ‘process-based’ contracts and, if so, how will they ensure that happens.
--The “Success” question:  Is there evidence that increased fines and jail time will make any positive change?  If you pass this change, what measure of success are you looking for?  What kinds of reports will you ask for?  How often?
--The “Integration” question:  How does this “Quality of Life” issue integrate with the “Emergency Declaration” and other actions the city is taking related to homelessness?  (The Homeless Action Plan?)  Does it serve any function in getting people into housing?
--The “Who is Pushing This” question:  Does this primarily come from the Homeless Collective?  If so, who specifically sat on the ‘Accountability Committee’?  What self-interest, if any, was involved?

3.  What about the ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act) & domestic violence victims?
Are there open shelter beds to serve people with disabilities, both physical and mental?  People with PTSD and other mental health needs that are triggered by crowded settings?  Victims of domestic violence who can’t be around their abusers and/or men at all?

4. Inadequacy of Sam Jones Shelter
Increased enforcement illegal without having shelter available?  Housing First.  No evidence the folks from Homeless Hill will get housing until Jan and then it’s preliminary.  Crowded.  Old building…  Questions of fairness:  Is it fair for someone who is “committing a crime” to step ahead of a person who might be 100th on the wait list?
Do you know what the waiting list time is at the various shelters?

5.  How are you implementing the Vulnerability Index part of Housing First?
How many on Homeless Hill were the highest priority on the Vulnerability Index?

6.  Sept 26 joint meeting with County and City.
What do you want to get out of that?

Meeting on the 26th has been changed to be a Study Session where the City Council hears a presentation from Homebase (the consultant hired to review the system of governmental decsion-making concerning homeless services, and its compliance with Housing First and HUD principles, and make recommendations).  The joint meeting of the City and County has been put off until November.

Specific Questions to Specific People

Business People
Cost to County and City
Cost to downtown district

--Enforcement will increase the visible numbers of homeless people around the county as people attempt to get away from Santa Rosa cops.
--Make September 26 meeting meaningful.  1) take joint control of continuum of care.  2) Plan shelters around the county and lower enforcement measures

City Staff (Sean, David and Kelli)
--What has the Council requested of you in regards to a Memorandum of Understanding through the District Attorney’s office?
--What are the important issues for the County, District Attorney and jail?
--How much increased police activity cost?  Where will the increased funding come from?
--How does the role of the Homeless Court fit into this “new” model?
--How would “diversion” affect current homeless services including shelter beds.
--Questions of fairness:  Is it fair for someone who is “committing a crime” to step ahead of a person who might be 100th on the wait list?

Police Chief
--“more services attract more homeless people”  (we had some proof that this is not true but I forget what it was)
--How will fines or jail times be tracked and will this data be available to the public?
--Will restorative justice be utilized and, if so, how would that be defined and accomplished?
--How does Homeless Court fit into this “new” model?

Jill Ravitch & others at the County
Does the MOU have to go to the Supervisors before it comes to the City Council

Georgia Berland
Update about homeless court.  How much is it doing?  What is the demand for it (backlog, waiting list)?  What are the most frequent agencies or case workers who refer people to homeless court? Will you write a letter and/or testify against this change?

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