Five key things Sacramento is doing to address homelessness right now

More resources are now available to people experiencing homelessness or on the verge of becoming homeless, thanks to new state and federal funding.

The Sacramento City Council on Aug. 18 approved a $62.3 million plan to address homelessness and increase affordable housing. The plan utilizes funding from several state and federal sources, including federal CARES Act funds.

“While the needs of people experiencing homelessness and those at risk of homelessness have definitely intensified due to COVID-19, luckily so have the resources from the state and federal government,” said Emily Halcon, the City’s homeless services manager. “We are not often in such a place where we have the availability of new resources for homelessness and housing.”

Here are five key City projects to address homelessness. Most are part of the new $62 million plan, however others were put in place before its approval.

1. Meadowview Navigation Center – The City, in partnership with the Sacramento Housing and Redevelopment Agency (SHRA), is set to open a new 100-bed shelter on Meadowview Road on Sept. 1. This “navigation center” will shelter women and provide them with necessary services as they transition from homelessness to permanent housing.

2. Meth Sobering Center – As substance abuse has been identified as a significant challenge in the homeless population, the City plans to use $1.2 million for a 20-bed, 24-hour methamphetamine sobering center. This center will not be exclusively for people experiencing homelessness.

3. Tiny homes –The City has allocated $4 million to purchase and place tiny manufactured homes throughout the City to provide permanent supportive and interim housing for individuals and families who are experiencing homelessness or at-risk of homelessness.

4. Rental assistance during the pandemic – The City will allocate $5 million to SHRA to help prevent low-income residents behind on their rent from being evicted. To qualify, people must make 50% area median income or less, be unemployed due to COVID-19, and be pending eviction. Priority will be given to families with children.

5. More permanent housing – Since April, the City and County have worked collaboratively to shelter more than 1,100 people in motel rooms as part of its joint emergency response to prevent the spread of COVID-19 among people experiencing homelessness. The City will contribute an additional $4 million that will be matched by the County and used to permanently rehouse 500 households currently staying in the four Project RoomKey motels.