|At the September 20th city council meeting, city staff, including representatives from the police department, presented information on city resources currently being devoted to homelessness and additional opportunities for the council to consider in defining the city's role in homelessness. Stemming from the conversation, city council requested additional information on a number of items. City staff has addressed each item below.
1. Explore the Creation of a Task Force: In the attached handout, staff has drafted a mission statement, membership composition, and schedule for a task force on homelessness.
2. Research the City of Eugene's Approach: Tigard Police Officers, who work the most with Tigard's homeless population, spent a day with City of Eugene staff who are responsible for implementing the city's approach. Details can be found in the Council packet.
3. Provide a post office box for Homeless Individuals: Just Compassion is considering renting a dedicated post office box for homeless individuals in Tigard. The group has asked whether the city would fund the annual cost of $90. The lack of a mailing address for homeless individuals is considered a major impediment when homeless individuals are applying for job opportunities.
4. Homelessness as a Council Goal: Councilor Woodard mentioned that addressing homelessness should remain a priority for the city council.
Additional Information: Recently, city staff participated in a community discussion, hosted by the Tigard-Tualatin School District, about the increasing homeless family population in the area. In the past two years, TTSD has experienced a substantial rise in identified homeless students, including a 20 percent increase year-to-date from last year. With county shelters at capacity and long wait lists, TTSD is investigating ideas to help find appropriate and stable housing for students and their families. The community discussion focused on Family Promise and whether the initiative is the right fit for Tigard. Family Promise is a non-profit homeless shelter program for families with children, supported by volunteers and faith communities who PROMISE to help families return to a home of their own. Family Promise is active in Beaverton, Hillsboro, and Salem. In December, city staff will attend the next discussion about Family Promise where TTSD will consider moving forward with the initiative.