April 14, 2024 Breaking News, Latest News, and Videos

Homeless Action: Committees Present Their Findings- Will Action Follow?

By Jennifer Eden

As the hum of community voices escalated at Wednesday night’s March 7 Homelessness Steering Committee meeting held at Roosevelt Elementary on Montana, the message from Santa Monica City Staff on homelessness was clear: a coordinated approach is in place, resident help is needed and $1.4 million-worth of resources have been mobilized.

But what does that mean exactly? A slew of committees presented their opinions Wednesday night; there are brochures, websites and a lot of chat, but is anyone acting on their findings/recommendations?

Figures released from the City of Santa Monica Tuesday, March 6, show a 4 percent year-on-year increase in Santa Monica’s homeless population based on the annual Homeless Count held Jan. 24. The count revealed a total 957 homeless people in Santa Monica, up from last year’s 921.

Within the 957, the number of people sleeping out, as opposed to finding shelter, increased from 92 to 104. There were fewer short-term homeless counted, down from 29 percent to 27 percent this year. Forty-four percent came from greater Los Angeles; 32 percent from interstate.

Santa Monica City is tackling the situation from all angles, City staff said, with new appointments, resources, vehicles and data collection systems in place.

“There will be a dozen new outreach workers in Santa Monica at the same time as 600 workers hit the streets across the county,” explained the City’s newly-appointed Senior Advisor on Homelessness Alisa Orduna. “We are going to get to know our population, what they need, and connect them to services with the force multipliers of the Library, Police and Fire departments doing the same work to connect people to assistance in collaboration faith-based organizations, businesses and everyone who wants to get involved.”

Santa Monica Fire Department recently rolled out a new Low Acuity Unity from Fire Station 2 that will be dedicated to low acuity calls for service, many of which involve homeless patients.

All Santa Monica Police Department officers have received homeless-specific training, and their Homeless Liaison Program (HLP) team given broad scope and extra resources to focus on finding solutions to Santa Monica’s long-term homeless residents. Housing programs to keep seniors in place are also being trialed, and Library services have been bolstered.

The bulk of the $1.4 million is going toward 12 outreach workers who will form part of L.A. County’s C3 teams, in “lite” versions – attempting to reach more people in the City.

Then there’s PR. $150,000 is being paid to GOOD Worldwide. They have created kits and information.

And while attendees of the Steering Committee meeting were encouraged to be kind to our homeless population, the leftover Mendocino Farm sandwiches from the evening were taken back to SMPD headquarters for staff, rather than being distributed among our most vulnerable.

Santa Monica Fire Department’s new Low Acuity Unit. Captain/Paramedic Paul Bellante (left). Firefighter/Paramedic Jason Frebe (right).
Photo: Santa Monica Fire Department
Related Posts

Registration Now Open for Summer at New Roads

April 12, 2024

April 12, 2024

New Roads School is accepting registration for its summer program, a vibrant selection of classes and camps curated to meet...

CodeREV Inspires Kids to Code

April 12, 2024

April 12, 2024

Budding coders, robotics engineers, game developers, animators and STEM campers are invited to join CodeREV this summer for a memorable...

YMCA Santa Monica: When School Is Out, Camp Is In

April 12, 2024

April 12, 2024

As the Santa Monica-Malibu Unified School District nears its end,  YMCA Santa Monica is setting up for its popular Summer...

Top 4 Party Boat Rentals in San Diego

April 12, 2024

April 12, 2024

Here’s a rundown of the top 4 party boat rentals that will elevate any event to an unforgettable experience: Alana...

Venice Shorts: Media Trucks Scour Canals After Saturday’s Violent Assaults

April 12, 2024

April 12, 2024

Just How Safe Is Venice? By Nick Antonicello Car vandalism, tool theft, break-ins, property theft, pick-pocketing at the beach, rampant...

Accents Owner Steven Hanna Reflects on Decades Long Legacy

April 12, 2024

April 12, 2024

For 37 years, Accents Jewelry has transcended mere commerce, evolving into a vibrant community, a crucible of creativity, and a...

Santa Monica Breakfast Club Hosts 8th Annual Mad Hatter Tea Party

April 12, 2024

April 12, 2024

Whimsical Event Raises Funds for Local Families’ Dental Care Needs The Santa Monica Breakfast Club is gearing up for its...

Council Advances Plans for 120+ Affordable Apartments

April 11, 2024

April 11, 2024

The Development Aims to Serve Individuals and Families Earning Between 30 to 80% of the Area Median Income The City...

(Video) The New Menu Experience at Cassia Restaurant in Santa Monica is Delicious

April 11, 2024

April 11, 2024

The Southeast Asian dishes satisfy. Friendly ambiance, flavorful food, subtle cocktails, beer and wine, and scrumptious desserts. @smmirrornews The New...

Lyft Driver Charged with Sexual Assault Following Investigation

April 10, 2024

April 10, 2024

The Incident Occured in September By Zach Armstrong A Lyft driver who allegedly sexually assaulted a woman last year has...

SB 1509 Advances: Malibu Officials Rally Behind Negligent Operator Treatment Bill

April 10, 2024

April 10, 2024

Senator Stern’s Legislation Gains Momentum in Effort to Curb Reckless Driving SB 1509, the Negligent Operator Treatment bill spearheaded by...

“New Girl” Actor Sells Palisades Abode for $3.1M

April 10, 2024

April 10, 2024

He and His Wife Undertook a Renovation of the Unique, Two-Story Abode, Transforming It Into a Picturesque Beachfront Dwelling Actor...

Nationwide Retail Theft Scheme Leads to Five-Year Prison Sentence for Santa Monica Man

April 10, 2024

April 10, 2024

The Man Led a Group That Hoodwinked Department Stores Across 23 States By Zach Armstrong A Santa Monica man was...

Two Women Assaulted and Injured Near Venice Canals, LAPD Initiates Investigation

April 10, 2024

April 10, 2024

The Venice Community Will See an Increase in Patrols Along With Black and White Police Vehicles By Zach Armstrong An...

Report: State Farm’s California Policy Shakeup to Hit Palisades the Hardest

April 10, 2024

April 10, 2024

Customers Affected Will Receive Notifications Starting July 3 for Property Holders and August 20 for Commercial Apartment Holders The San...