The Mid-Willamette Homeless Initiative will hold its second meeting on Tuesday, March 29, 2016, from 4 to 6 p.m. in Council Chambers at the Keizer Civic Center located at 930 Chemawa Road NE. The meeting is open to the public. In order to accommodate a larger audience, future task force meetings will also be held at the Keizer Civic Center.
"We were so pleased by the overwhelming response to our first meeting," said Keizer Mayor Cathy Clark. "Clearly our broader community cares deeply, as we do, about connecting people with critical services and, of course, housing resources."
Task force agenda items include presentations and discussion regarding affordable housing and strategic planning. Time is also set aside for public comment. Written feedback may be submitted in advance to email@example.com by noon on March 29.
The Mid-Willamette Homeless Initiative has launched a new website to share information and chronicle task force progress. The new website features meeting dates, agendas and minutes, meeting materials, key documents, news articles, as well as related links and staff contact information. To access the site, please visit http://homelesstaskforce.net.
"We are excited to offer a website where people can quickly find information about the task force. The website offers everything from agendas and minutes to research studies and local resources," noted Commissioner Janet Carlson.
February 2016 Task Force Meeting
More than 100 people attended the kick off meeting of the task force on Feb. 17, 2016. Mayor Anna Peterson introduced members of the task force. Presentations related to housing, services, and funding sources were made by Community Action Agency, Marion County Housing Authority, Salem Housing Authority, West Valley Housing Authority, the Department of Housing and Urban Development and Rural Oregon Continuum of Care. Find agendas and minutes online at: http://homelesstaskforce.net.
"The Mid-Willamette region is proving once again that it is the collaboration capitol, by joining forces to address the many and varied causes of homelessness," said City of Salem Mayor Anna Peterson. "I am confident that with the leadership of the task force members, and the strong support and interest already shown by the communities, that we will find solutions and garner resources to meet these pressing needs."
About the Mid-Willamette Homeless Initiative
The number of people who are homeless throughout Marion and Polk counties is on the rise. Local city and county leaders have joined forces to help generate solutions. The Mid-Willamette Homeless Initiative was formally established in early 2016 to help address some of the fundamental issues facing people experiencing homelessness in the broader Salem-Keizer metro area and across Marion and Polk counties.
A task force, led by Salem Mayor Anna Peterson, Keizer Mayor Cathy Clark, Marion County Commissioner Janet Carlson and Polk County Commissioner Jennifer Wheeler, was created to serve the Mid-Willamette Homeless Initiative. Each jurisdiction appointed five community members with varying expertise in the diverse and complex factors affecting the area's homeless population.
Key Areas of Focus
The task force is looking at contributing factors including addiction, education, mental health and transportation as they determine key areas of focus. Key areas of focus are likely to include affordable housing, chronic homelessness, critical services and public safety, among others. The task force also intends to examine the challenges of unique populations such as seniors, youth and veterans.
Task force meetings are scheduled for: March 29, May 2, June 6, July 20, Sept. 19, Oct. 17, Nov. 7 and Dec.1, 2016. The task force will remain operational until February 2017, unless additional time is needed.
"We're so pleased at the amount of community interest," said Polk County Commissioner Jennifer Wheeler. "With a much larger venue for the second meeting, we should be able to accommodate the community interest."
For more information regarding the Mid-Willamette Homeless Initiative, contact:
Hitesh Parekh, Marion County
(503) 566-3915 or firstname.lastname@example.org
City of Salem, Urban Development
(503) 540-2405 or email@example.com