The City held a Council Study Session on April 17, 2018 to discuss the topic of homelessness, related challenges and opportunities, and possible actions the City can take to improve the current situation in Fremont.
Homelessness is a complex societal issue created by a variety of factors including lack of affordable housing, mental illness, and substance abuse, among others. In recent years, the number of unsheltered or homeless individuals has increased not just in Fremont, but for the entire state of California. As of January 2017, the City’s biennial homeless count indicated there were 479 homeless persons in Fremont and it is estimated the actual number is higher.
Historically, the City has managed its homeless efforts with existing resources but given the growing magnitude of the issue, staff is recommending additional resources and a new, more coordinated approach to mitigate the impact of homelessness on our community and on the homeless individuals within it. The City Council directed staff to analyze the following options for future consideration:
- Increasing staffing to address homeless issues
- Expanding temporary shelter options
- Creating a day center
- Offering temporary safe parking
- Creating a flexible spending fund which can be used to:
1) Offer incentives to landlords to accept residents who have governmental housing subsidies
2) Provide subsidies for rapid rehousing and to help those facing a housing crisis maintain their housing and avoid eviction
- Modify City requirements to allow faith-based organizations to shelter homeless individuals on a temporary and/or seasonal basis, without permit fees/or cost
This is a pressing societal issue and the entire community is encouraged to engage and assist Fremont in identifying solutions. The City will be holding another meeting to discuss homelessness issues at the July 17 Council meeting that begins at 7:00 pm.