Homelessness Task Force sees drop in number of homeless people needing services – The Malibu Times
At the June 21 Homeless Task Force meeting, task force members discussed current efforts, addressed overnight parking, and identified potential strategies to improve service delivery in accordance with the Charter of the Homelessness Task Force and City Council directives.
To begin the meeting, task force member Terry Davis was appointed to the ad hoc committee on fire, health and public safety. For an ad hoc committee report, Davis compared the number of people they were initially helping when they started services to their current number.
With all the services and resources Malibu has provided throughout the year, Davis said a homeless connection day was not needed this year, but the homeless outreach team is planning always to organize one.
“We really need to focus on the services in particular that we need to provide to these people, because it’s not the same as when we started a few years ago when we had the first day of connection where 120 people showed up and you start nut soup,” Davis said. “They had nothing and you bring them IDs and social services — we don’t have that population anymore. And the number of people who need these services is very low, and that’s a comment on the work that’s being done.
Davis said they still needed access to an alternative sleeping location [ASL]but also a mode of information sharing and communication between services.
“I just want to say that I’m really proud of what Malibu has done, and I really want to take the next step,” Davis said.
The Malibu Community Assistance Resource Team (CART) is a 501(c)(3) volunteer community team that serves the basic needs of homeless people in Malibu. CART’s volunteer activities include Homeless Connect Days.
On Homeless Connect Day, homeless people enjoy free services including health and medical services, legal assistance, Department of Motor Vehicle services and more at the annual event.
The People Concern works to empower vulnerable people suffering from poverty, abuse, mental illness and services provided without shelter. Goodwill, the Listening Post, Animal Care and Control, local veterinarian Dr John Lupo and a host of other agencies pitched in to offer help. Some of the agencies that were present include the DMV, Pepperdine Legal Aid Clinic and The People Concern.
Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority (LAHSA) is an independent joint authority that provides funding, program design, outcome evaluation, and technical assistance to more than 100 nonprofit partner agencies that help homeless people achieve life. independence and stability in permanent accommodation.
In Malibu, the first-ever Homeless Connect Day was held in 2015 at the Old Courthouse with the goal of reaching and providing services to the city’s homeless population. As an added incentive to participate, they are offered freebies just for showing up: free haircuts by local stylists, flu shots, and a free lunch box and service kit.
Captain Jennifer Seetoo attended the meeting for the first time since returning and provided an update on pedestrian and vehicle fatalities on the Pacific Coast Highway.
“Last year, based on our statistics, there were nine fatalities, seven of which were pedestrians and what the traffic sergeant told me I think every one of them was a passenger” , said Seetoo. “And people can look at that and say ‘well, that’s just a transient,’ but that’s not how we view them; it’s a human life.
Seetoo said they also observe locations, daytime and track trends of where these accidents are happening.
“Once we start dissecting it, we can identify our problem with the city in terms of signage or lighting,” Seetoo said. “We can look at all of this and we can work with Malibu – these are conversations we need to have to protect our transient population.”
Seetoo said she would provide data at the next homeless task force meeting.
Regarding overnight parking, panel members expressed concerns about the length of time each RV stays in one spot and asked if there were any parking enforcement fines.
“It’s difficult for the application, from what I heard, so we tried to look at other things,” said Susan Dueñas, public safety officer. “The reason we made this ordinance is that we were never able to pass any other ordinances because the Coast Commission would block it. There are other ideas out there but from what we understand it would just be blocked by the Coastal Commission, that doesn’t mean we can’t try.
Kelly Pessis, a member of the task force, proposed that the ad hoc legal committee review the restricted parking orders and report back to the task force.
Seetoo said sheriff’s deputies will take nightly walks for parking checks at locations where task force members have seen an increase in the number of parked vehicles.
Towards the end of the meeting, task force member Paul Davis announced his resignation due to relocation, but wanted to advise the panel to seek a new member to appoint to the ad hoc committee.
“I’m torn,” Davis said. “I’m really grateful for all the work that everyone has done and each of you in the highest regard. I’m sad to leave.
The next meeting of the homelessness task force is scheduled for July 19.