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The original item was published from 2/3/2016 3:38:59 PM to 2/23/2016 12:00:04 AM.

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City of Everett News

Posted on: February 3, 2016

[ARCHIVED] Everett prepares to house first five chronically homeless under Safe Streets plan

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City partners with YWCA to provide supportive services

Contact: Meghan Pembroke, communications director, 425-257-8687

EVERETT – Mayor Ray Stephanson announced this week that the City of Everett is ready to house its first five chronically homeless individuals.

“Housing the chronically homeless is a major focus of the Safe Streets plan that I announced last September,” said Stephanson. “When Lloyd Pendleton came to Everett in November, he challenged us to accelerate that commitment and secure housing for five people by Feb. 1, and another 15 by the end of June. We are on track to meet those goals.”

Through the Chronic Utilizers Alternative Response Team (CHART) program, the City has identified the four men and one woman who will be housed first. Together, they accounted for hundreds of contacts with first responders and the criminal justice system over the past two years. All suffer from mental health and substance-abuse disorders, and each has been homeless for extended periods of time.

While the City is developing plans for a facility with 60 units, controlled access and on-site supportive services, the initial efforts will house individuals in existing rental units and deliver the supportive services using a “scattered-site” model. The City has partnered with the YWCA to secure housing and provide supportive services for the first 20 individuals, who will be housed in existing units throughout the City.

“We are incredibly grateful for the expertise and partnership of service providers in our community who have stepped up to support our efforts,” said Stephanson. “The YWCA already provides permanent supportive housing for 300 people, and has the knowledge and experience to help us meet our initial goal.”

YWCA staff is working with their network of landlords to secure units that will meet each individual’s specific needs.

“The biggest challenge we face is finding available units in our community, where we have less than two percent rental vacancy,” said Stephanson. “This is a unique opportunity to be a part of something truly life-changing for our most vulnerable citizens, and we encourage interested property managers to contact the YWCA.”

In the meantime, Stephanson has committed to ensuring that the five individuals have access to temporary shelter until the long-term units are available in the coming weeks.

For more information on the Safe Streets plan, visit everettwa.gov/safestreets.

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