Sunday, February 24, 2013

Proposal to add beds to Bayview homeless shelter

The City has secured $1 million in State funding to expand and improve its shelter system, and wants to lease industrial space next door to Mother Brown/United Council Homeless Resource Center at 2111 Jennings Street, according to an announcement from Bevan Dufty at the Mayor's Office.
The "Bayview Shelter" would require approval by the City Planning Commission, according to the announcement, and a shelter operator would be chosen through a competitive process planned for later this year.
Meetings have been planned for the community to share its thoughts about the proposed shelter.
Wednesday, February 27th 6pm - Southeast Community Facility (1800 Oakdale @ Phelps)
Tuesday, March 5th, 6pm - Bayview Police Station (201 Williams Avenue @ Newhall)
For more information, contact Bevan Dufty's office at 415.554.6164.
From the announcement:

The United Council of Human Services (UCHS) began as a meals program in the Bayview about 18 years ago. Since that time the range of services have expanded to include those of a homeless resource center offering showers, two meals each day, laundry facilities, as well as lockers and an overnight drop-in center where approximately 50 people can stay in chairs from 7PM through 7AM. UCHS provides outreach services to the homeless in the Bayview, case management linked to education, benefits eligibility, employment referral and housing referral. Recently, UCHS added transitional housing services specifically for veterans who are eligible under the Grants Per Diem program.

The new shelter in the Bayview will be a new two-level, 100-bed facility adjacent to 2111 Jennings divided into sections for homeless men and women. These sleeping units will replace the need to have people stay in chairs overnight. In addition, shelter residents will have access to showers, lockers, and two meals each day at Mother Brown's. The ability of beds instead of chairs will ease the nights for the homeless population which, recent UCHS reports indicate, include a growing percentage of the elderly. Shelter clients will also have access to case management services currently available at UCHS and also those provided by the START team of behavioral health case managers available to all shelter clients through the Department of Public Health.


fiercemom said...

It is high time there was at least a shelter in Bayview. There are so many people going without homes and people who are in at best marginal or vehicular housing in the area that need this.

Not only are people homeless here, but in keeping with the statistics of the general african american population of the neighborhood, there are disproportionately high numbers of people without housing who suffer crippling medical issues. People with congestive heart failure (a common ailment among our older population here in BVHP), whose legs swell up with fluid when they are not able to elevate their legs sit whole nights at the resource center because they can't get a bed anywhere else, which is akin to risking death every night by stroke.

In addition to shelters, people need permanent single adult housing here. I know this is not what the people who fund these things want to do in this area, but there are so many older adult people who are not just moving into the area but are longtime residents, who either have nowhere else to go or will not consider living anywhere but the area they were raised in, where their support is.

fiercemom said...

It's about time. Before the gentrification of the area, no one cared if people without homes were on the street. But cynicism aside, BVHP has disproportionate number of people who are medically fragile who are forced to stay every night at the resource center overnight, in chairs... i have personally met 3 people who suffer from congestive heart failure who need to elevate their legs or risk stroke, who sit in those chairs overnight.

Also, maybe more funding could be given to make single adult housing available to people who have no housing who receive services at that resource center. Most of these people are on a fixed income and need housing that is subsidized at 30% of income, not the state tax credit subsidy that has minimum and maximum income limits that invariably exclude them based on income.It would be a revelation to give the funding for housing for these people to an agency that actually serves them and are invested in serving them rather than changing the voting demographic of the neighborhood.