Our Families with Children (FWC) Committee gathered in September to discuss the future of its new quarterly joint meeting with the Committee to End Homelessness’ Family Homelessness Initiative. They also reported back on the start of the new school year for the students who are homeless that they serve. Here are some brief notes from the discussion:
HOW DID START OF SCHOOL GO FOR MCKINNEY-VENTO STUDENTS? Please be sure to e-mail rebecca[at]homelessinfo[dot]org
with your back-to-school experience(s).
Backlog of enrollment paperwork
In Seattle, had students who didn’t go the first 2 days of school because of this.
Others said the first two days of school had VERY fast turn-around re: paperwork, but slowed significantly after that.
Reports of buses being 1.5 hours late – A. Moon (Mary’s Place)
Reports of taxis being 2 hours late – A.Moon (Mary’s Place)
Case Manager said she went above and beyond to verify and confirm – multiple times – that the orders were correct. And still, these delays happened. She even had a taxi with incorrect orders and wouldn’t take the student to the correct school!
In West Seattle, it took one week to get a bus to pick up a student.
Safety concerns of younger students being assigned ORCA cards instead of a taxi or bus
No one reported ORCA card issues (e.g., then not being loaded)
Multiple people reported having concerns and questions around the 1-mile rule (i.e., no transportation, must walk). Case Manager said that 2-mile rule for homeless families who live in Queen Anne is quite difficult. There is a much greater impact of this rule for families who are homeless
Proactive and flexible engagement from Liaison
Liaison w/ Lowel (school) came to provider to talk through McK-V and connect with families. SUPER HELPFUL
In class/Teacher issues
Parent said middle-school aged son was marked down in class because he didn’t have correct school supplies. The teacher didn’t know he was McK-V student. KS worked with Child Care Resources to get supplies, and to report to principal and work with teacher. School doesn’t seem to understand that they’re ‘on the hook’ to do better. And Jr. high and HS is very challenging because there are so many more teachers.
Parent shared that her other child is being pulled out of SpEd by the school. This doesn’t make sense since her child is visually impaired.
Sacred Heart said things went really well. They met with families earlier than normal, and that was a big help.
CEH/FHI DISCUSSION - future conversations, points of learning
SYSTEMS REALIGNMENT: changing of housing stock, realignment
DATA – there’s such a focus on quantitative, but where’s qualitative. And how do we ensure that happens? Idea for FWC to organize around this as combined we have huge amounts of rich experience w/I organizations and families served.
re: RRH: feels like there are high expectations, and there’s a reality of the affordability of housing. Not easy, not quick process. Landlords aren’t exactly on-tap.
LANDLORD ENGAGEMENT: Concerns about TANF families who have gotten housing in rental market. While no case manager wants to stop homeless families from becoming housed, we want to do everything to make sure that they aren’t “rapidly unhoused.”
ACCESSIBILITY OF UNITS
REFERRAL PROCESS: many involved in the Pilot said they have empty units, and are loosing money. Families are being referred that don’t actually qualify.
“BARRIER REMOVAL WITHIN SYSTEM”
RRH – after the pilot is over: what modifications do we suggest, and how can we work to follow up. Discussion about how and when evaluation is conducted.
EVALUATION: want to truly understand what this means, when it happens, what’s involved, who does it, etc.
OUTCOMES: “who’s the keeper of transparency in that system”
DEFINITION OF SUCCESS: what is the definition, who defines it, is it open to suggestion, and in what ways does it differ from our organizations’ definition of success?
Meeting structure: this is what the group wants to hear more about at each joint meeting, and especially the upcoming joint meeting. [ we spoke about the RRH pilot evaluation process as an example]
Who makes decisions
Who’s involved in the committees, subcommittees, participating agencies, etc.
Who is the audience of each of the FHI, CEH, FWC mtgs?
Who has influence? And to what degree?
Families who have voice – how does FHI reach out to them, and where can others input?
Clarity – generally speaking
Focused guiding questions are very helpful, but don’t need handouts early.
Comment: “Will what we say have an impact?”
Funders: taking a backseat would be helpful, and make sure that they are clear on focus of meeting.
Request for built-in structural parameters of what’s being facilitated, and who is facilitating.
In lieu of the regularly-scheduled November FWC meeting, please mark your calendars and plan to attend the November 6 community meeting on Family Coordinated Entry.
The consultants contracted to review our community’s coordinated entry for families – Katharine Gale and Kate Bristol (Focus Strategies) – will review their findings, present information on other system models, and facilitate dialogue around key challenges. This is an open meeting for all, not just organizations who participated in the Pilot project. Your presense, comments, and feedback are important — join us!
Community Meeting on Family Coordinated Entry
Thursday, November 6, 2014 from 9 am – 12-noon
Tukwila Community Center, Banquet Room
12424 42nd Ave S., Tukwila, WA 98168 For questions and to RSVP, please contact michelle[dot]valdez[at]cehkc[dot]org
Wow, what an amazing experience it was being able to jump into my internship with Voter Registration! As of today our count for homeless and unstably housed new and updated registered voters is 176, and the numbers are still coming in from our dedicated member organizations! So far we have surpassed our numbers from last year by over 60 voters and I want to give a shout-out to our hard working volunteers and our fantastic sites. Getting to meet so many people who are doing great work in our community as well as community members who are speaking up by registering to vote was a great way for me to get a feel of what the Coalition is all about.
Members of Camp Unity were very thankful that we let people know that You Don’t Need A House To Vote. At the Urban Rest Stop I spoke to an individual who did not know his right to vote would be restored after he finished his time under Department of Corrections (DOC) supervision and was enthusiastic to spread the word. At Real Change many vendors were glad to update registrations and register for the first time while picking up their newspapers. Over 84 people registered at various Compass Housing Alliance programs including the Hygiene Center, CSO, Pioneer Square Men’s Program, and Peter’s place. We also worked with Community Lunch on Capitol Hill, Nickelsville, Tent City 3, Recovery Café, Aloha Inn, YouthCare and more during our registration drive! On Monday, the registration deadline, one of our volunteers from DESC Connections let me know that many people she talked with about registering had already registered at Real Change or another site showing that we have reached many community members. While the registration deadline for the November 4th election has come and gone, it is never too late to register to vote to be prepared for the future!
With updated voter registration status now YOU can take action and Say YES to Seattle Transit! Together we can pass this proposition in Seattle that would Restore some routes, Add Busses to chronically overcrowded routes, and Increase Frequency of heavily traveled routes. Further, money will be set aside by the city to make it easy for eligible residents to utilize Metro’s new Low Income Fare ($1.50) starting on March 1, 2015.
Phone Bank with the Coalition to Spread the Word!
We will be holding two phone banks and need volunteers to call the community to let them know about Proposition 1. There are two Wednesdays to fill with volunteers. Pizza will be provided for dinner and together we can Get Out The Vote for Seattle Buses! Please let Hillary know if you can join on one or both dates ASAP at firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling 206-204-8357.
Wednesday October 15th: 5:30-8pm, pizza included
Location: OneAmerica Office: 1225 S. Weller St. Suite 430 Seattle, WA 98144 (located in the international district by Rainier Ave S. and S Dearborn St, close to where I-5 and I-90 meet)
Wednesday October 22nd: 5:30-8pm, pizza included
OneAmerica Office: 1225 S. Weller St. Suite 430 Seattle, WA 98144 (same location)
Today’s post is brought to you by Sara Robbins, Benefits Attorney at Solid Ground and Coalition on Homelessness Board Member. Please share this publication with any staff that are working with TANF recipients!
I wanted to let everyone know that there are significant changes happening to the TANF Sanction Rules. Starting November 1, 2014, if someone’s TANF grant is in sanction for 2 consecutive months the TANF grant will close. The current rule is that TANF will close after 4 consecutive months of sanction. I have attached a mailer that was sent out by DSHS to all TANF recipients informing them of the change. I am also including a link to the Washington Law Help publication that gives more information about TANF sanctions.
This rule change is especially important since there is a rule that if someone’s TANF closes 3 times they will be permanently disqualified from receiving TANF. If someone is permanently disqualified, anyone in the household will be ineligible for TANF.
Please feel free to contact myself (see below) or anyone in Family Assistance if you have questions about the rule change, You can also contact us if you are working with families that are currently in sanction or at risk of entering sanction.
This is your friendly reminder that our Single Adults Advocacy Committee meets this Thursday, October 9 at 12-noon at the Plymouth’s Simons Apartments at 2119 3rd Ave (downtown Seattle), 2nd floor conference room.
We are thrilled to be joined by Kelli Larsen, Director of Strategic Initiatives at Plymouth and a Design Team member for the 25 Cities Initiative, who will share what is under discussion related to our community’s involvement in the national 25 Cities Initiative, designed to reduce homelessness among veterans and people who are chronically homeless. This includes how ’25 Cities’ relates to coordinated entry for single adults, and how we can be good informants and advocates as these policies, programs, and budgets are developed.
King County recently announced the opening of two county-funded shelters to respond to the demand for additional services during the winter months. Please make sure to share this information widely.
King County Men’s Winter Shelter
Open every night October 1 – December 31st, 2014
Location: King County Administration Building – 500 4th Avenue Downtown Seattle (Between Jefferson and James)
Operator: The Salvation Army
Capacity: 50 men
Hours: 7:00 PM to 6:00 AM
Access: Line up for the shelter in front of the loading dock garage door at the corner of 4th and Jefferson.
King County Women’s Winter Shelter at Angeline’s
Open every night October 1, 2014 – April 15, 2015
Location: YWCA Angeline’s 2030 -3rd Avenue, Seattle (Belltown neighborhood – 3rd Avenue between Lenora and Virginia)
Capacity: 40 Women
Hours: 8:00 PM to 7:00 AM – Women have the option to stay at Angeline’s in the morning for breakfast and throughout the day.
Access: Women may stop by and register with the Women’s Referral Center daily between 6:00 to 9:00 PM. After 9 PM drop-in or call (206) 436-8650 for space availability.
For more information on the shelters, please contact Janice Hougen with King County Community Services Division at (206) 263-9089 or email@example.com.
As service providers, we understand the power of effective advocacy. But, advocacy fails in the absence of a strong, cohesive voice that is willing to talk about the issues that affect us the most. We need to speak up not only to protect current human services programs taking care of our neighbors in need, but also to nurture the growth of additional resources to aid our work in ending homelessness. If you feel King County would benefit from stronger services for individuals and families experiencing homelessness, join us this month at one of SIX platforms where we can have our collective voice heard. Check out this blog post with more information on Seattle City and King County Budget Committee Hearing Dates and commit to joining us as we speak up on behalf of the communities and people we serve.
Now that the Seattle Mayor, Ed Murray, and King County Executive Dow Constantine have proposed budgets to their perspective councils and the public, it is that time of year again to organize and advocate for important causes on both the King County and Seattle City levels. During the month of October there are SIX opportunities all over the county to meet with council members and share your opinions about what is important and should be included in the budget. We would love to see ALL of our members join forces together to show the Coalition on Homelessness’ dedication to our communityby having a large presence at every Budget Hearing. We want to hear from you if you are coming! Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call our office at 206-204-8350.
Seattle City Council Budget Hearings:
Tuesday, October 7 from 5:30-6:30pm (sign-up 5 pm) at Garfield Community Center (2323 E. Cherry St., Seattle, WA 98122)
Thursday, October 23 from 5:30-6:30pm (sign-up 5pm) at Seattle City Hall Council Chambers (600 Fourth Ave. 2nd Floor, Seattle, WA 98104)
On Monday Mayor Murray proposed his budget to a roomful of people, including many of the participants of our Homeless Youth Advocacy Summit who were excited to be part and are enthusiastic about joining us at future budget hearings this October.
King County Council Budget Hearings:
Wednesday, October 8 at 6:30pm, Fall City: Chief Kanim Middle School, (the Commons Area), 32627 SE Redmond-Fall City Road, Fall City, 98024
Tuesday, October 14 at 6:30pm, Bellevue City Hall, Council Chambers, 450 110th Ave NE, Bellevue, 98004
Thursday, October 23 at 6:30pm, Norm Maleng Regional Justice Center, Courtroom 3F, 401 4th Ave N, Kent, 98032
Wednesday, October 29 at 6:30pm, King County Courthouse, Council Chambers 10th floor, 516 3rd Ave, Seattle, 98104
Many people have contacted us about the Seattle Housing Authority’s (SHA) new Stepping Forward proposal, which involves changing the rent structure for SHA properties and voucher programs for tenants who are not elderly or disabled: rents would no longer be tied to the household’s income. There is important context for this proposal, and SHA has been a key partner in prioritizing people who are homeless for available subsidized housing. Many good questions and concerns are being raised, including by members of the Coalition, and by Seattle’s Mayor.
Join us for an important opportunity to learn about and discuss this proposal at our September 18 General Membership meeting. We expect the conversation to continue at our October meetings, too. We will welcome staff from SHA who will present the proposal in detail, and answer questions. We anticipate a robust and respectful discussion.
And remember, there’s no better place to gather accurate and timely information and take part in deep discussion than at our General Membership Meetings. We’re looking forward to seeing you on Thursday the 18th! Same place and time: 9-11 a.m. at the E. Cherry YWCA (2820 E. Cherry St, Seattle, 98144).
Attention Youth and Young Adults Committee members and other interested parties:
Here are two opportunities this month to celebrate one year of great work by the Youth Housing Connection (YHC) and to offer valuable feedback about changes and next steps for their second year.
Wednesday, September 17
10 a.m. – 12 p.m.
Tukwila Community Center (12424 42nd Ave S, Seattle, WA 98168)
Wednesday, September 24
1 p.m. – 3 p.m.
2100 Building (2100 24th Ave S, Seattle)
Join the Committee to End Homelessness and the YHC team for YHC at Year One: Learnings and Reorientation to review lessons learned, correct misconceptions, and review opportunities for community feedback and training.This event is open to all stakeholders, community members and service providers, but funders, agency leadership, supervisors and front line staff are especially encouraged to attend. We hope you will be able to make it!
We had such a great turnout at our “Helping Homeless Students: McKinney-Vento 101” workshop on August 26, 2014, and we hope you found the topic just as engaging and informative as we do. As promised, here is a list of resources our wonderful presenter, Katara Jordan from Columbia Legal Services, put together to navigate common hurdles that prevent homeless students and their families from accessing the valuable services they need to get to and stay in school.
Basic Education Rights and Opportunities in Public Schools
At last week’s General Membership meeting, Heather Barr (aka Everyone’s Favorite Public Health Nurse) with Health Care for the Homeless led us in a presentation and training to quickly, safely, and calmly recognize and respond to health emergencies at work. With lots of information and a relatively brief amount of time to share it, she graciously provided her PowerPoint (with links to videos!) to us for distribution.
Heather also gave us an easy and helpful homework assignment: watch these 5 videos related to responding to common medical emergencies. Each will reinforce what we learned and also help you to visually identify different types of emergencies. And here they are:
Join us next month for a special Coalition discussion of the Seattle Housing Authority’s rent change proposal at the General Membership Meeting. Mark your calendars – September 18 from 9-11 a.m. at the E. Cherry YWCA (2820 E. Cherry Street, Seattle, WA 98144).