Orange County’s burgeoning homeless problem is coming to a head. Over 750 homeless persons living on the Santa Ana Riverbed have been evicted. Shelters at the Courtyard and Bridges at Kraemer Place are at capacity and in some cases unsafe for persons of disabilities. To add insult to injury, elected officials are failing to use hundreds of millions of taxpayer dollars find permanent solutions to provide service and safely house these homeless individuals.
To shine light on stories that aren’t making headlines, LASOC developed the following timeline of what we’re doing to find permanent solutions for the county’s most vulnerable population since initially filing a lawsuit against the County of Orange for discriminatory actions taken against homeless individuals with disabilities who currently reside at the Santa Ana Riverbed on February 7, 2018.
February 7, 2018:
Legal Aid Society of Orange County filed a lawsuit against the County of Orange for discriminatory actions taken against homeless individuals with disabilities and their ability to access the County’s programs or services because of their disabilities. The lawsuit was filed on behalf of People’s Homeless Task Force, a homeless advocacy association, and seven homeless individuals who live at the Riverbed.
See the full press release here.
March 23, 2018:
LASOC files an amended complaint against the County of Orange. See the amended complaint here.
March 25, 2018:
An updated court order is issued by Judge David O. Carter where he issues his concerns that the County is not doing enough to ensure it will meet its promise to find a permanent solution. Read the order here.
March 27, 2018:
LASOC provided a letter to be included in public comment during the County Board of Supervisors hearing on March 27.
Not noted in several news outlets, however, were the public comments in support of a permanent solution using the $70.5 million in mental health funding. Some residents also voiced support of converting Fairview, utilizing Irvine’s county land and/or Laguna Niguel’s county land. Many residents agreed that these people lack the services needed including mental health services or access to benefits.
Read the letter submitted to the Board of Supervisors here.
May 31, 2018:
The Orange County grand Jury releases a report on the effects of chronic homelessness in the County and urges leaders to collaborate on solutions: Read the full report here.
Continue to check back as we share more updates regarding this very important issue to all residents of Orange County. Thank you for the continued support.