The First 100 Days: LA County Homelessness Emergency Response

On April 20, 2023, the County marked the first 100 days of its Homelessness Emergency Response. Focused on three missions – fast-tracking and scaling up encampment resolutions, housing, and mental health and substance use disorder services – the County has been laying the groundwork for its most intensive effort yet to help people experiencing unsheltered homelessness by offering permanent housing solutions. This includes apartments, houses, board and care facilities, and other settings that meet their needs.

The County immediately leveraged the Board of Supervisors’ emergency declaration to cut the red tape around hiring, contracting, purchasing and grants. It also expanded its authority to streamline real estate leasing, acquisition, and development.

Among the many benefits of those changes is it will enable the County to hire as many as 250 additional outreach workers, mental health clinicians, substance use counselors, housing navigators and more on the frontlines in the fight against homelessness by this Summer.

Encampment Resolutions

This Spring, the County is preparing a major expansion of its current Encampment Resolution efforts in a proactive partnership with local jurisdictions and governing entities to reduce unsheltered homelessness in cities as well as in unincorporated LA. These Encampment Resolutions build on existing solutions that have already housed 90,000 people over the last five years, and are centered on the following values: unity of effort, housing focus, racial equity, trauma-informed, consistency, and flexibility.

The County’s partnership with the City of Los Angeles in the implementation of Inside Safe is a prime example of the partnerships the County hopes to replicate countywide. County Departments, staff, and resources were leveraged in all 13 Inside Safe operations, which collectively brought more than 1,000 people into interim housing over 100 days of encampment resolutions.

Leveraged County Resources in outreach/street-based services

  • 70 % of the outreach teams leading the Inside Safe efforts have been County-funded DHS Multi-Disciplinary Teams (MDTs) that serve clients with more complex health and/or behavioral health conditions.
  • Almost 50% of the operations have included targeted support by the DMH Homeless Outreach & Mobile Engagement (HOME) Teams which provide psychiatric support, outreach, and intensive case management to people experiencing homelessness with severe impairment.
  • The specially equipped mobile clinics, known as the DHS Mobile Clinic Program, provided strategic support as needed to sites through a team doctors, mental health professionals, nurses, substance use counselors and social workers.

Leveraged County Resources for Permanent Housing Solutions

  • Approximately 400 County-funded Time Limited Subsidies, a locally funded housing subsidy program, have been matched to Inside Safe clients. This resource offers housing and services until clients can gradually take on the rent themselves.
  • The County has dedicated approximately 300 Housing Navigation slots to Inside Safe clients. Housing Navigation supports people experiencing homelessness in identifying, applying for, securing, and moving into permanent housing.
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