Gov. Gavin Newsom today announced the award of $50 million in grants to 19 communities throughout California to provide shelter or housing for 1,401 individuals currently experiencing homelessness in encampments. In September 2021, Governor Newsom set a goal of cleaning 100 encampments – since then, the state has cleaned 431 encampments, working with local governments to offer housing and services to former residents. The state is on course to clear 1,000 encampments by the end of 2022.
“Tackling the homelessness crisis is a matter of life and death,” said Newsom. “California is taking on the unacceptable status quo with a historic response to house thousands of our most vulnerable community members at an unprecedented rate, and swiftly addressing the encampments that pose the greatest threat to health and safety.”
Last year, Newsom took unprecedented action to address the state’s homelessness crisis, investing a historic $12 billion to help get the most vulnerable Californians off the streets and get them the mental and behavioral health services they need. The California Blueprint builds on this bold investment with a proposed $2 billion to advance behavioral health housing and encampment rehousing strategies, creating a total $14 billion package.
The proposed $2 billion investment includes a $500 million expansion to the Encampment Resolution Grant program, building upon the initial $50 million investment for the program last year. The program is intended to fund local projects to rehouse unsheltered homeless individuals in encampments, position people living in encampments on paths to safe and stable housing, and to restore public spaces to their intended uses.
“The 19 communities selected to receive this funding are committed to human centered, scalable and replicable projects, and represent urban, rural and suburban communities across California,” said Lourdes Castro Ramírez, secretary of the Business, Consumer Services and Housing Agency and co-chair of Cal ICH. “We look forward to supporting these community-led efforts that connect housing, services and human supports, and to scale successful strategies and approaches with future funding as proposed in the Governor’s CA Blueprint budget.”
The Governor’s multi-year homeless housing plan will provide 55,000 new housing units and treatment slots, once fully implemented.
The City of Los Angeles will receive $1.7 million to rehouse 60 individuals.
“We recognize that housing is health and that investing and scaling local programs that look to address the wholistic needs of our unhoused neighbors is vital to our success in getting more Californians off the streets,” said Dr. Mark Ghaly, secretary of the California Health and Human Services Agency. “Our vision of a Healthy California for All is rooted in the idea that every individual belongs to a strong and thriving community, and where necessities like housing are complemented by access to physical and behavioral health.”