August 8, 2012
Ad-Hoc Homelessness Steering Committee
4:00 - 6:00 p.m.
Ayars, Parker, Sohl, Saldana, O’Bryon, Morris (Council liaison), Reid (Staff)
Hopkins-Powell, Lewis, Rohde
Agenda Item #1: Call to Order
Parker called the meeting to order at 4:10 p.m.
Agenda Item #2: Approval of Minutes
Saldana/Ayars moved to approve the minutes as presented. Voice Vote-Motion passed unanimously.
Agenda Item #3: Debrief from the Faith Community Meeting
The Committee members felt that the meeting accomplished what they had hoped. The committee members learned about additional resources available to homeless populations. Committee members also learned that there is a lot of interest and support for an organization that would function similarly to the former ICCA. Ayars met the new Rabbi at Temple Emek Shalom, Rabbi Boettinger. She has scheduled a meeting with him for next week, he said that he is very interested in working with those less fortunate. Audience member Haxton stated that he thought that it would be helpful if the HSC could use the list of resources generated from the FBO meeting last month to create a pamphlet or handout to provide to the homeless. It was suggested that committee members should e-mail any resources not listed in last month’s minutes to Reid who will compile the list and bring it back to the group for review at the next regular meeting. Parker mentioned that she was encouraged by the positive response from the faith community participants and how willing they were to provide volunteers and resources.
Agenda Item #4: Discussion/Next Steps on the following Issues:
Next Steps: O’Bryon stated that the committee needs to set a date in the near future to invite the FBO’s back to encourage further discussions, also there were some FBO’s not represented because they had scheduling conflicts. It would be nice to hear from them.
a.) Winter Shelter
: Parker would like to find ways/organizations/funding streams that can help to provide shelter this winter. A subcommittee made up of Saldana, Morris and non-committee member Haxton, was formed to look at several options including: whether Ruth will be organizing the emergency and Sunday night shelter’s again this year, whether the Presbyterian church will be able to host the Sunday shelter, whether CERT can become involved again, either through training or volunteer coordination and what that would entail/cost, and lastly, what barriers regulatory or otherwise are preventing organizers from utilizing City buildings for emergency shelter.
b.) Jobs Program
: It was decided to put this topic on hold, since it can be covered under the services offered at a day use center.
c.) Housing Options
: The September meeting of the Jackson County Homeless Task Force will be held in Ashland (September 18th
, 10:30-12:00 at the Ashland Community Center) at that meeting the housing providers present can give a brief overview of their programs.
d.) Day-Use Center
: See item #5 below.
Agenda Item #5: Update from Dennis Slattery
Councilor Slattery has continued to work on the Day Center/Homeless Resource Center proposal. Slattery believes that an effective day center can make some of the other homeless and at-risk resources possible. Slattery has maintained communication with the Salvation Army and has also continued to talk with community members, stakeholders and the council about the day center idea. The council has authorized the use of City resources in the form of staff time to go on a fact finding mission to explore properties, leases, and potential organizations to come up with some specifics to bring back to the council. There is a realization that something needs to be done in the near term, thus far things have been moving incrementally. There is still a lot to be done; looking at specific financial liability and day to day operating costs of the center. We are at a fork in the road where we will see if the community can get behind a start-up day-center. Audience member Wieczorek asked Councilor Slattery if the City would be open to working with a more local group who is financially ready and able to take on such an endeavor. Slattery answered that the City would be open to any organization that is willing to work toward fulfilling the mission of helping people who are homeless, that is the focus of the effort; whatever will best accomplish that mission. Parker thanked Slattery for his efforts in continuing to move the day-center concept forward. Parker referenced a recent article in the Journal of the American Medical Association (see attached) which shows that providing supportive housing for chronically homeless populations is more cost effective for communities than to do nothing. Parker stated that providing a service such as a day center would be beneficial both to the City and to the Ashland community.
Mobile Clinic Update- the Mobile Clinic will be in Ashland from 9 A.M. until 5 P.M. every Tuesday until school starts. There has been a lot of demand for dental services. People who come for dental services should plan on getting there as early as possible, services are first come, first serve. Behavioral health is offered as well and the clinic does have the ability to provide medications on site.
Parker made an announcement about the Oregon Mission of Mercy free dental clinic coming up on September 13-16th
. The event is looking for volunteers and Parker would like to see the HSC come up with some kind of transportation to and from the event for Ashland residents. This dental clinic will be able to offer dentures to those in need which is something that the La Clinica Mobile Clinic is not able to do at this time but which they are seeing a lot of need for.
Mobile Shower Unit: Parker gave the group an update on the mobile shower unit that the Emergency Medical Corps (?) has. Parker has spoken with the coordinator and it looks like Ashland may be able to borrow the unit. At this time no formal agreement has been finalized and there are still a lot of details to be worked out. The unit will need to be hooked up to a power and water supply. Parker will continue to work on this resource.
Next meeting: August 27, 2012 4:00-6:00 P.M.
Siskiyou Room-Community Development building
Respectfully Submitted by Linda Reid, Housing Program Specialist