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January 3, 2011

Full Board - January 3, 2011
San Francisco Local Homeless Coordinating Board
Full Board Meeting
January 3, 2011

Members Present: Bobbie Rosenthal; Christine Ma; Wendy Phillips; Laura Guzman; Richard Springwater; Erick Brown; Rae Suber

Members Absent: Kevin Sharps

I. Introduction
The meeting was convened at 11:09 am

II. Minutes from December 6, 2010 Meeting
Motion made to approve the minutes from the December 6, 2010 meeting with the proposed edits.
M/S/C (Rosenthal/Phillips/Springwater/1 abstention).
Motion passes

III. Discussion on Homeless Count
LHCB staff provided a brief update on the biannual homeless count. The SF homeless count will take place on January 27, 2011. The methodology that will be used in 2011 is the same that was used in 2009 with some minor adjustments made to comply with updated HUD guidance.
In 2011 there will also be an additional 500 demographic surveys completed, totaling 1,000. The data collected provides more in depth information about street, shelter, and transitionally housed homeless.

Board member Ma suggested having a different way to explain “household” in the survey.
Board member Phillips suggested that families in SROS also be included. The locations of SROs are known so getting the data should not be difficult. There needs to be a commitment.

Board Member Rosenthal said that looking at folks doubled up or families in SROs can maybe be a project to take on during the “off years” of the Homeless Count.
She also suggested working with homeless Veterans to get the homeless veterans count.

Board member Guzman stated that there can be a survey and sample done in the SROs to get data. Having this data would also be helpful to supplement data found in the Mayor’s Office of Housing’s consolidated plan which speaks to increase in poor families. Board member Guzman also said there is a need for better children’s data.

Board member Ma asked how the City decided to count additional data from hospitals, etc, but not those doubled up. Staff responded by saying she is not aware of the full history, but currently the decision is based on resources. It takes much fewer resources to get data form hospitals or the jail than it does to get data from the entire SRO stock in San Francisco.
Board member Srpingwater added that its also much easier to get data that already exists from the hospitals, as opposed to collecting data from the SROS that does not currently exist.

Board member Phillips said the data does exits and there are agencies that collect it. Wendy will work to get the information to the staff.

Public Comment:

Daryl Higahsi of HSA stated that there is a need for volunteers so please spread the word.

A member of the public stated that the homeless count number misses the hidden homeless. There is an undercount in those that don’t visibly look homeless and therefore are not counted by the enumerators. Also those couch-surfing and doubled up are also missing.

Jennifer Friedenbach said that having an observation only count is problematic because the majority of people don’t look homeless; it is easy to get the number of folks in SROs; the family shelter waitlist should be used for the total number; the youth count is always severely under represented; the survey will be including questions about access.

Tomas P wants to see a copy of the survey that is going to be used. The survey should not be overly intrusive and should be helpful, not discouraging for those taking the survey. He also asked what outreach is being done to hire people who are homeless to administer the surveys.

Karen Gruneisen asked if the doubled up families now fit the new definition of homelessness included in the HEARTH legislation and therefore should be included in the count?
Bridget, from Homebase responded by saying the HUD guidance specifically states to keep the narrow definition in place for the homeless count.

Charles Pitts stated that the beaches should be counted. And to get the numbers from the SROs the LHCB should consult the SRO Task Force and also the building inspectors.

Board member Springwater stated that all communities have an undercount because the homeless are hard to count and this should be the context into which we look at this data. The homeless count is an approximation and the number should not be taken too seriously.
He also questioned the quality of the data that would be collected from the SROs.

Motion made to gather the most recent census data from the SRO collaboratives to include in the Homeless Count as addendum to the report.
M/S/C (Ma/Phillips/Unanimous)

IV. Update on Workforce Investment Board Community Advisory Committee (WICAC)
Phil Clark, the LHCB appointed representative to the WICAC provided an overview and update on the work of the Workforce Investment Board and the Community Advisory Committee. The WIB is responsible for strategic planning and funding distribution and the advisory committee looks to give the community’s input on the decisions made by the WIB.
The WICAC is focusing on youth and the chronically unemployed who have multiple barriers, which include the homeless and those re-entering from jail/prison. Workshops and meetings focusing on specific topics and groups are being set up by the WICAC. The work of the committee is reported back to the full Workforce Investment Board.

Board member Guzman said we should look at using WIA dollars to target homeless programs.

Board member Ma suggested that the WICAC look at childcare and how the lack of it creates a barrier to employment.

Public Comment:
Tomas P. asked where the information about the workforce investment board and committee could be found? Phil said all the information was online on their website.

Robert W. said that in addition to jobs and employment being discussed, its also important to discuss things needed to become job ready and how people can successful readjust after coming out of incarceration.

Charles P. requested that he be put on the listserve for the committee. Also share any reports that are issues. He stated the importance of wrap around services in shelters and housing and also said that some homeless people should be able to start their own businesses.

Phil encouraged everyone to attend meetings and also information is available at

V. Presentation on the Annual Homeless Assessment Report (AHAR)
Bernhard Gunther, Homeless Management Information System (HMIS), coordinator gave a brief presentation on the draft annual homeless assessment repot (AHAR). This is the third year he has presented the AHAR. The AHAR is a report that is mandated by HUD and the data shared with Congress. San Francisco gets points awarded on their annual McKinney application for participating in the AHAR.
The data is a snapshot of emergency shelter, transitional, and permanent housing. Permanent supportive housing data was new to the AHAR this year. The final report is due in two weeks and will have a little more detail. He also noted that the data for permanent housing is not just for McKinney funded projects, but rather City wide. Since there are so many housing sites, there is some gap in the data. Participation is 80-85%.

Bernhard also mentioned that per a HUD and VA mandate we are putting HUD VASH (vouchers) into HMIS along with Veteran grant per diem transitional housing data.

The data represents unduplicated persons.

Board member Springwater requested data that shows comparison between this year and previous years.

Board member Ma discussed the apparent trend of increased utilization rates in the family shelters. This can be due to increased use but also more agencies reporting data. Also there is not a 100% utilization rate in family PSH, this is due to new units coming online and not yet submitting into HMIS.

Board members expressed interest in more data along with explanations to the utilization rates in each housing category.

Public Comment:
Tomas P would like a percentage breakdown for each housing type (?)
Jenny F. thinks there is an undercount on Latino and mixed race especially in permanent supportive housing for families. There are more white families getting PSH and this could represent “creaming”. Finally she also noted the amount of families with a large number of persons in the families.

Bernhard cautioned the analysis of the race data, Latinos are counted in the ethnicity category and the way HUD asks that you report the data may lead to misinterpretations if you take the numbers at face value.

Nancy Cross stated she wants data on the number of smoke free housing units and shelter beds. The City and non-profits have to honor these health regulations.

VI. Other Business
A) Sit Lie Ordinance
Staff provided update and a handout was provided. Although the ordinance passed in November, it will not be implemented until officers are trained and the public is educated. Expected implementation is in February. SFPD liaison has offered to do a presentation at the LHCB.

B) Committee meeting dates and topics
LHCB reviewed the next topics and meeting dates of the Policy Committee and Funding Committee.

C) Sunshine Ordinance Training
Training is scheduled to happen at the February or March meeting.

D) Information on “Daily Homeless Connect” program
An article in the Examiner stated that the program is set to open in February and will be headed by Tenderloin Health. The Mayor’s representative did not have any additional information and DPH was not in attendance at the meeting.

VII. General Public Comment
Tomas P. stated that there should be public comment taken after each old business item. He also stated he is happy to see the Policy Committee is discussing performance measurements. He does not think Tenderloin Health is not able to effectively run the new daily homeless connect program. And finally, the LHCB should hold no meetings at 77 Otis St.

Nancy C. would like to see data on those who are in violation of the sit/lie ordinance. Where do the chronic offenders live. People deserve to have spaces outside to sit and talk and get fresh air.

Jennifer F. commented that SFPD Chief Gascon has a sit lie implementation committee but the Coalition on Homelessness declined to sit on it. Jenny also expressed frustration that there was no community process discussing the proposal for the “daily homeless connect”. It demonstrates the need for the LHCB to be consulted on policy issues and facilitate community process.

Robert W. stated frustration that HSA did not implement any of the COH’s suggestions for the single adult shelter survey. The LHCB should intervene.

C. Pitts stated the sit lie ordinance is a representation of the failure of shelters and of SROs. The Ten Year Implementation Council should meet more often. And finally he asked if the Employment Roundtable meeting will be a public meeting? (Response was yes).

Meeting was adjourned at 12:55pm.

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