OC’s Homeless Commission Absent as Hundreds are Dying in Pandemic

Throughout the previous yr of the pandemic, Covid outbreaks at local homeless shelters, more homeless deaths than ever throughout the county and the latest shooting death of a homeless man by Sheriff’s homeless liaison officers in San Clemente, commissioners have barely met a lot much less solved a lot. In the meantime, homeless persons are dying in file numbers.

Norberto Santana, Jr.

A pioneering chief within the nation’s rising nonprofit information motion and an award-winning journalist. Santana has established Voice of OC as Orange County’s civic information chief, uncovered the truths throughout Southern California governments for greater than 20 years and reported on Congress and Latin America.

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Not surprisingly, the commissioners haven’t precisely been in a position to clear up homelessness – which was the audacious goal again in 2012 when the physique was fashioned by county supervisors with the objective of getting issues discovered by 2020. 

And that’s after an enormous fancy reorganization in 2018 the place the identical Orange County Supervisors took full management of the physique arguing that placing them in cost would give the fee badly-needed focus. 

But regardless of being chaired by Supervisors’ Chairman Andrew Do, who received two completely different tight elections, in 2016 and final yr working on a platform of homelessness response, the fee has barely met since final yr. 

In line with the fee’s personal public web site – one thing confirmed by the Well being Care Company workers – the County’s Fee to Finish Homelessness began canceling its conferences final yr simply because the pandemic took maintain in March. 

Since then, native guide golf equipment have stored a extra common assembly schedule.

In line with the Fee’s public web site,  conferences had been canceled in March, April, June and July. There’s no cancelation discover listed for the month of Might.

It took till August for commissioners to fulfill and the physique went darkish in opposition to till October of final yr.

This yr, the fee has but to fulfill in any respect, in keeping with official data.

Do didn’t reply to a request for an on-record remark and neither did most commissioners. 

Orange County Well being Care Company officers – who took over stewardship of the fee after a 2018 reorg eliminated the panel as a direct report back to County CEO Frank Kim – averted interviews on Tuesday in search of details about why the fee not often meets.

They did provide a press release on what it does.

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