The City Council marked a major milestone, voting unanimously to adopt Malibu’s Homelessness Strategic Plan during the Council meeting on Monday, June 25.
“This is a great example of a grassroots movement of people and community-based organizations responding to a need, partnering with the City, and evolving into a community-wide effort involving residents, organizations, faith groups and government agencies all working together,” Mayor Rick Mullen said. “Now we are starting to see the positive results, and it really says a lot about who we are as a compassionate, engaged City.”
The Strategic Plan is designed to improve the effective use of existing resources, align Malibu’s local efforts with those of the Los Angeles County region and balance the need to protect public safety while addressing the humanitarian and long-term needs of homeless individuals.
The Advisory Group worked with a consultant to draft the Strategic Plan, which is the result of a community survey, targeted questionnaires and three half-day strategic planning workshops. The Advisory Group included about 30 representatives from the City, Malibu residents, the Sheriff’s Department, the Malibu Task Force on Homelessness, the faith community, CART (Community Action Resource Team), the People Concern, the Malibu Homeless Outreach Team, S.O.S. (Standing on Stone), the business community, California State Parks, the County of Los Angeles Public Library, St. Joseph’s Center (Malibu’s Coordinated Entry System partner), and the Pacific Palisades Task Force on Homelessness.
This year for the first time, the City included a budget allocation to address homelessness in the Fiscal Year 2018-2019 Budget. Included in the Public Safety budget is $200,000 to support Malibu’s Homeless Outreach Team and an encampment management initiative which are both part of the Strategic Plan.
Since they started their work in September 2016, the Homeless Outreach Team has gotten 30 people off the streets and into permanent housing. Malibu’s homeless population has decreased from 180 in 2017 to 155 in 2018 (-14%), according to the results released by Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority (LAHSA) of the Greater Los Angeles Homeless Count recently conducted across the County and in Malibu. This result is also lower than the 2016 Count which showed Malibu had 161 homeless.
To keep the community informed about the homelessness initiative, the City created a dedicated web page at MalibuCity.org/Homelessness to provide information and resources about homelessness in Malibu, information about the Homelessness Strategic Plan, links to staff reports, information on public safety questions, contact information for organizations that work on homeless outreach and services, ways to get involved and upcoming events. The page also has two recent videos the City highlighting the work of the Homeless Outreach Team and a town hall meeting about the Homelessness Strategic Plan. For more information, call Public Safety Manager Susan Dueñas at 310-456-2489 ext. 313 or email SDuenas@MalibuCity.org.