Gov. David Y. Ige today signed a sixth supplemental proclamation on homelessness, which will remain in effect until Oct. 19. The supplemental proclamation provides 60 additional days in which to further expand the state’s collaborative efforts to house the most visible and chronic homeless individuals. In the past year, the proclamations have helped more than 4,800 people — representing 1,353 families — move out of homelessness or prevent it altogether.
“The tide is turning,” said the Governor’s Coordinator on Homelessness Scott Morishige. “Collectively, our state is moving forward with a unified strategy that addresses three levers of change: affordable housing, health & human services and public safety. All stakeholders are working together in unison across multiple sectors. This coordinated and persistent approach is moving people off the streets,” he said.
Lever One: Affordable Housing
A major priority for the Ige Administration is to increase affordable housing. The proclamations allowed for emergency housing of approximately 300 homeless individuals who were in jeopardy of being displaced after federal budget cuts to seven local organizations.
Additionally, the proclamations reduced the development time of nine different joint projects with the counties by up to a year per project. These housing projects are specifically designed for homeless individuals and families, including the Family Assessment Center in Kaka`ako Makai, which will open in September and house 240 people per year. Today’s supplemental proclamation adds two additional City & County of Honolulu long-term housing projects, bringing the total to 11.
Lever Two: Health & Human Services
The proclamations allowed faster distribution of financial resources for permanent housing and to prevent homelessness. Between August 2015 and July 2016, there was a 51 percent increase in the number of individuals and families moving into housing or preserving housing, as compared to the prior 12-month period. This includes a 55 percent increase on O‘ahu and a 47 percent increase on the neighbor islands. The following programs received increased funding:
- The State Homeless Emergency Grant (SHEG) provides one-time assistance for housing, food, medical and other types of expenses arising from emergency needs.
- Housing Placement Program (HPP) provides first month’s rent or security deposit, as well as temporary case management, for homeless families with minor children.
- Coordinated Statewide Homeless Initiative (CSHI) provides homelessness prevention and Rapid Re-Housing statewide, and increases coordination for the statewide telephone navigation service (2-1-1) for homeless individuals.
Lever Three: Public Safety
By enabling the quick execution of contracts and allocation of dedicated resources, the emergency proclamations supported the reduction in the number of unsheltered persons in the Kaka`ako Makai area. The population decreased from a high of approximately 300 unsheltered persons in August 2015 to approximately 50 unsheltered persons in August 2016.
Filed under: aloha, Announcements, Economy, Environment, Hawaii, Health, Legal, National Affairs, Security, State Affairs, Sustainable Living Tagged: | Hawaii Governor Extends Emergency Homeless Proclamation, Homeless in Hawaii