SEATTLE (December 1, 2016) —Today, the Human Services Department announced the siting of three new temporary sanctioned encampments for individuals living unsheltered in Seattle. This action is part of the Bridging the Gap plan, announced in October, to better address the immediate needs of people experiencing homelessness while the City fully implements its long-term plan, Pathways Home.
Together, the following three new sanctioned encampments will serve more than 200 people starting in early 2017:
- 1000 S Myrtle Street will contain up to 50 tiny houses serving 60-70 people.
- 8620 Nesbit Ave N. will contain up to 50 tiny houses serving 60-70 people.
- 9701 Myers Way S will contain up to 50 tents serving 60-70 people.
“Today’s announcement recognizes our need to provide safer alternatives to the people living unsheltered on our streets as we work to implement Pathways Home,” said Catherine Lester, Director of the Human Services Department. “We remain committed to our long-term plan to transform our homeless services system and focus our investments on getting people off the streets and into housing. In the meantime, we will continue the work of increasing our outreach efforts, implementing a more compassionate set of protocols when cleanups are necessary and offering trash and needle pickup services.”
In October, Mayor Murray announced the Bridging the Gap plan, which recognizes that the City should not displace unauthorized encampments that do not pose an imminent health or safety risk or do not unlawfully obstruct a public use, unless the City can offer those living there a safer alternative place to live. The plan reflects the principles laid out by the Task Force on Unsheltered Cleanup Protocols.
That announcement came a month after Mayor Murray announced Pathways Home, Seattle’s plan to transform our homeless services system by focusing our investments on the goal of getting people into stable housing. The plan aims to eliminate barriers to better meet the individualized needs of those experiencing homelessness, shift investments where necessary to achieve the goal of moving people into housing, and increase accountability to this goal through performance-based contracting.
The first of the authorized encampments is scheduled to open in early January.
Additional information about the Mayor’s actions to address homelessness can be found here.