Vista sees progress in second year of homeless plan

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Ten homeless people in Vista have been placed in permanent housing and 28 people have spent 418 nights in motel rooms through a voucher program over the past two years, Vista City Council members said in an update. update of May 24 on the strategic plan to combat homelessness.

The plan was adopted in March 2020 and was followed by contracts with Exodus Recovery, Inc. for case management, North County Lifeline for homelessness prevention services, Alliance for Regional Solutions for shelter beds in La Posada in Carlsbad and Haven House in Escondido, and ElderHelp in San Diego for a roommate program.

Results of a county-wide homeless count released last week found that 41 people from Vista were in shelters in Carlsbad and Escondido the night of the count while 76 people were at the outside homeless for a total of 117 homeless people in the city. Over the past 18 months, 72 Vista people have stayed at the two shelters for a combined total of 3,577 nights, staff members told the council.

Over the past 18 months, Exodus has engaged 289 customers, with 89 new people in the past six months. ElderCare has four people in its roommate program and one person on probation, though the program should attract more applicants once it becomes better known, according to the staff report.

North County Lifeline’s homelessness prevention program helped 47 families for a total of 145 residents, with an average distribution of $3,321 to each family. There is $58,000 left in the program and city staff recommends continuing the program with more funding.

City council last year approved a $50,000 voucher program that provided motel rooms to 28 people who were being helped find permanent housing, and staff members are also recommending that the program continue.

Over the past 18 months, the city’s homeless resources have tripled and now include more outreach workers, a homeless outreach vehicle, the motel voucher program and a resolution grant. state’s $1.8 million encampment, according to the report.

The grant has funded the removal of 45 tonnes of waste from 288 encampments in the city’s biological reserve over the past 18 months.

The grant also funded two care managers, a housing navigator and a community health worker, rental assistance for up to 40 people and flexible funding for bus passes, food, school supplies. hygiene and other items and rental assistance for up to 40 people.

The city’s outreach program found that 62% of people living homeless in Vista were male, with an average age of 43.

After the presentation, Council Member John Franklin noted the variety of programs at Vista and said the city had never rejected a homeless solution presented to it.

Councilor Corinna Contreras said the conversation about homelessness has improved and said she’s glad to hear the progress, but stressed the city needs more affordable housing and safe parking for people. people who live in vehicles.

Council member Joe Green said the report showed there were things to celebrate, but also that more needed to be done.

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