NEWSOM CITES MILESTONES TOWARD ENDING CHRONIC HOMELESSNESS
From the Mayor's Office of Communications
October 5, 2005
Major Gavin Newsom today standing on the rooftop terrace of the
newly refurbished and recently re-opened Raman Senior Hotel, announced
two significant achievements in his efforts toward ending chronic
Newsom's "Care Not Cash," now referred to as the "Housing
First" program, has been successful in getting more than
1000 homeless city residents into permanent supportive housing.
The Human Service Agency, which oversees the city's housing and
homeless programs, reports that as of September 16, 2005, Mayor
Newsom's "Care Not Cash" housing initiative has resulted
in 1025 fewer people living on the street.
These individuals have received housing opportunities and are
now residing in many of the permanent supportive units as a part
of the city's Housing First Program.
Additionally today's announcement gave the Mayor a chance to
officially recognize the Raman's re-opening as the city's newest
permanent supportive housing facility dedicated solely to housing
homeless senior citizens. The 85 unit senior hotel was establish
as a result of a directive from the Mayor in his effort to assist
all homeless seniors living in emergency shelters to transition
to permanent supportive housing. Newsom cites the statistic that
8% of all single adult shelter beds are occupied by persons over
the age of 60.
"The emergency shelter system is inherently flawed and unsafe
for seniors. They are often part of a vulnerable population that
should be afforded housing opportunities with the appropriate
supportive services, including access to primary care," said
Housing First and permanent supportive housing for any homeless
individual, whether they are young or a senior, allows for stability
in their lives and creates a platform for addressing the underlying
cause of their condition- mental health problems, substances abuse
addictions, or lack of job skills," continued the Mayor.
Studies show that between 80% and 90% of the chronically homeless
placed in supportive housing stay in that housing for more than
2 years, further reducing use of more expensive City services.
Today's announcement also included a generous donation of $100,000
dollars from Washington Mutual, (formerly Providian Financial
as a result of a recent buyout.) The money will go toward the
Mayor's Homeless Fund to expand the number of supportive units.
Joseph Saunders, CEO of Washington Mutual, was on hand to help
with the announcement of the donation, which is to establish supportive
housing for the chronically homeless that will be used specially
for raising private dollars to expand the Mayor's Housing First
and DPH Programs.
Both programs have been designated as national best practices.
This award program offers statewide recognition for the creativity
and leadership demonstrated each day by county governments with
similar Care Not Cash initiatives.
Newsom noted that the donation would enable the City to launch
a greater fundraising effort by highlighting Washington Mutual
as a pioneer in creating better private/public partnerships in
the challenge to end chronic
homelessness in the city.
Recently the Mayor's Housing Fund has received other generous
donations from the private sector ranging from $25,000 to $480,000
bringing the total to over $600.000 dollars in private sector
The City anticipates another 80 units to come online with the
opening of the Coronado which will house individuals coming directly
from the streets as placed by the Street Homeless Outreach Teams.
Furthermore the Human Services Agency anticipates that 1, 276
permanent supportive housing units will be on-line by the end
of fiscal year 2006, exceeding the goals of the Ten Year Planning
Council to end chronic homelessness in the city.