Press Release: Joint Statement on California State Auditor Report on Homelessness
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
February 16, 2021
Contact: Nick Day | (612) 396-2908 | [email protected]
Bring California Home Coalition, Mayor Eric Garcetti, Mayor Libby Schaaf, Assemblywoman Luz Rivas Issue Joint Statement on California State Auditor Report on Homelessness
Today, the Bring California Home Coalition, Mayor Eric Garcetti, Mayor Libby Schaaf, and Assemblywoman Luz Rivas released the following joint statement in response to the California State Auditor Report on Homelessness:
“The report put out last week by the California State Auditor is stark and, unfortunately, accurate: California’s current approach to fighting homelessness, the defining issue of our time, is not working. Though 9 different state agencies have administered over 40 individual homelessness programs in the last 3 years, more Californians are thrown into housing insecurity every day.
“To be sure, COVID-19 has exacerbated our homelessness crisis in a way we could have never foreseen, and there are success stories like Homekey that we can build on. However, it’s clear that California needs to build a more stable, streamlined, unified approach — so that as the pandemic and our economic crisis lingers, we can stem the bleeding of housing instability.
“The report makes it abundantly clear that we need to pass AB 71 and revolutionize our approach to reversing the cycle of homelessness in California. With the stakes as high as they are, and the evidence this stark, there’s no time to wait.
“Our diverse, broad coalition looks forward to working with legislators, Governor Newsom, and other leaders to ensure we pass this critical legislation.”
Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti said, “This report reinforces what we already knew: California needs a long term, comprehensive strategy that matches the magnitude of our homelessness crisis. Near-term solutions have been absolutely vital — from HHAP and HEAP commitments to Homekey to record investments by many of our cities — yet the threat of COVID-19 has reminded us that only a lasting solution like AB 71 and a steady stream of funding will give us the resources and certainty needed to deliver housing, health, and hope to our most vulnerable neighbors.”
Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf said, “This report clearly demonstrates that one-time funding and disjointed programs won’t fix systemic homelessness. AB 71 would create the ongoing funding our Governor has called for and implement the most comprehensive, effective approach we’ve seen. We can reverse the heartbreaking increases in homelessness we’ve seen on our streets. We can adopt the strategic vision our Auditor has called for. AB 71 is how.”
Assemblywoman Luz Rivas (D-Arleta), author of AB 71, said, “The report put out last week by the California State Auditor verified that our current approach to homelessness is not enough. The state needs a single entity to oversee its homelessness funding and programs which my 2020 bill, AB 1845 [Office to End Homelessness] sought to achieve. While AB 1845 was vetoed, I am proud of this bill and the commitment from the Governor to continue partnering with me on solutions to homelessness. This year, I authored AB 71, which reforms the way we approach homelessness and generates a sustainable funding source for homeless programs. This bill will ensure strict reporting, and monitoring of funds that goes directly to these programs. I look forward to working with the Governor on a plan to structure our homelessness efforts so that we can effectively fund, coordinate, and deliver solutions to end homelessness in California.”
Bring California Home, a coalition of elected officials and advocates from across California is supporting AB 71. For more information about the coalition and the plan to reverse the cycle of homelessness, visit www.bringcahome.org.