The Santa Rosa City Council voted unanimously on Tues., Nov. 15, 2022, to adopt a five-year strategic plan to address the critical concern of homelessness in the city. The Homelessness Solutions Strategic Plan provides key strategies and actions to improve the City’s response to homelessness in alignment with the regional system of care, the Sonoma County Continuum Care, with the ambitious goal of achieving “Functional Zero” homelessness in Santa Rosa by 2027.
“Similar to other large cities in California, homelessness in Santa Rosa is an urgent concern and resolving it is a top priority,” said City Manager Maraskeshia Smith. “The Homelessness Solutions Strategic Plan provides a roadmap to address this concern through detailed actions. The City is part of a broader system of care, and it will take continued close coordination with the Sonoma County Continuum of Care and our many community partners to achieve the plan’s goal to end homelessness in Santa Rosa. We are committed to working towards the goals in the plan.”
The Homelessness Solutions Strategic Plan outlines a set of strategies, five-year goals, and performance targets the City will implement to reduce homelessness. The strategies and actions outlined in the plan were shaped by an in-depth analysis of the current homelessness response within Santa Rosa and informed by local data and input from a wide range of stakeholders, including community members experiencing homelessness, homeless services providers, business and non-profit groups, and members of the greater Santa Rosa community.
As outlined in the plan, “Functional Zero” homelessness is achieved when homelessness is rare and brief and the availability of services and resources match or exceeds the demand within the community. “The goal is to develop enough short-term, mid-term and long-term options for shelter and housing to accommodate people entering the system of care, or falling into homelessness, versus people exiting the system of care, or resolving their homelessness,” said Kelli Kuykendall, Housing and Community Services Manager.
The City engaged a national consulting firm, Focus Strategies, in March 2022, which helped develop the plan over the following eight months. The next steps, following the City Council’s adoption of the Homelessness Solutions Strategic Plan, are for City staff to further develop an implementation plan and to pursue opportunities to align the City’s strategic plan with the Sonoma County Continuum of Care’s strategic plan on homelessness, which is being developed now and anticipated to be completed next month.
Visit SRCity.org/HomelessPlan to review the Homelessness Solutions Strategic Plan.