SPPA meeting Friday November 17, 2017 at 10:00 AM.
SPPA OCTOBER 20, 2017 Meeting Minutes
CALL TO ORDER
The meeting was called to order by Ms. Marion Taylor at 10:15 AM. Following a motion and a second, the minutes from the September 15, 2017 SPPA meeting were unanimously approved. Ms. Taylor then turned the meeting over to Ms. Martha Kegel, Executive Director of UNITY of Greater New Orleans.
Ms. Stephanie Brumfield, Program Manager, Jefferson Parish Department of Community Development, and Ms. Martha Kegel, Executive Director of UNITY of Greater New Orleans, presented the monthly navigation awards. Honored were Ms. Jessica Lovell, Harry Tompson Center, the Outstanding Navigator of Chronically Homeless; Ms. Trinna Stanford, Catholic Charities Archdiocese of New Orleans, the Outstanding Navigator of Homeless Families; and Ms. Shantrell Trufant, Volunteers of America, as Veteran Navigator of the month. Ms. Kegel and Ms. Brumfield thanked everyone for their awesome work housing the homeless and their dedication.
EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR’S REPORT
Low Barrier Shelter
Ms. Kegel reported that Start Corp was selected as the operator of the new Low Barrier Shelter. The city is committed for the shelter to open prior to Mayor Landrieu’s term ending in May. Ms. Kegel stated that a group will need to convene to come up with a prioritization plan and how the admissions process will work.
Please mark your calendars – the annual Point-in-Time count will be held on January 22 and 23. Additional information about the event will be forthcoming.
200 Homes for the Holidays Campaign
Ms. Kegel announced that a big push is on now to house 200 chronically homeless people before the holidays. She stated that we want to house as many chronically homeless people that we can prior to the Point- in-Time count in January; doing so will not only save lives immediately but result in more funding for our CoC HUD application for years to come.
Reduction in prison population
Ms. Kegel reported that 200 people are being released from prison in November. Unfortunately, no housing funds are being appropriated to help them. Mr. James Logan is heading up the city’s initiative in regard to this – if your church, synagogue, mosque, are able to adopt a person to help with assisting their transition back into society, please contact Mr. Logan at email@example.com, 504-658-4957 (office), 504-939-0071 (cell).
Appointment to Governor’s Commission on Homelessness
Ms. Kegel stated that she has been appointed to serve on the Governor’s Commission on Homelessness. The Commission and the Louisiana Housing Corporation are interested in increasing SOAR participation. Plans are to add a clause to PSH contracts that participants will need to have filed for SSI and be entered into SOAR database within 90 days of entry into PSH program.
UNITY Open Position
Ms. Kegel stated that UNITY has an unfilled outreach position. For additional information about the position, please contact Ms. Angela Patterson, UNITY Deputy Director, at firstname.lastname@example.org, 504-899-4589 x 101.
UNITY Canal Street Office Building Under New Ownership
Ms. Kegel stated that this building has been sold. It is likely that UNITY will be needing new office space. UNITY needs a large meeting space and a minimum of 5,000 square feet with free parking. Please contact her with any information regarding new office space, email@example.com, 504-821-4496 x 109.
Due to issues beyond UNITY’s control, we are no longer offering Information & Referral services at the Canal Street location. I & R has been shifted it to the CRRC at 1530 Gravier St. The new number to access I & R is 504-412-3700 x 153952.
HMIS Universal I.D. System
Ms. Kegel and Mr. Cliff Harris, Regional HMIS System Administrator, VIA LINK, stated that adoption of a Universal I.D. System would allow for one common I.D. per person to be used. It was stated that this is the only difference from what is currently in use. PSH programs may need to make adjustments to reflect the new system.
FOLLOWING DISCUSSION, ON A MOTION BY OLIVER COLEMAN, AND DULY SECONDED, THE HMIS UNIVERSAL I.D. SYSTEM WAS ADOPTED. MOTION CARRIED.
An APR training will soon be held on the new section for Rapid Rehousing programs. Also planned is training on ESG programs. An email with information regarding the training dates and times will be sent out in advance of the trainings.
Presentation on the Goals and Progress
of the HousingNOLA Initiative
Ms. Andreanecia Morris, President/Chair, Greater New Orleans Housing Alliance and the Executive Director of HousingNOLA, presented on the Goals and Progress of the HousingNOLA Initiative. She began by stating that she has worked with UNITY for some time dealing with the housing crisis, and high rents since Hurricane Katrina.
Ms. Morris stated that 61 percent of renters spend more than 30 percent of their income for housing in New Orleans. The media income has decresed from $39,000 per year to $36,000 per year. HousingNOLA gave itself for 2016 a B-, with the 2017 Report Card barely making a C (politically issues may have factored into the low score). Ms. Morris stated that 93 percent of voters feel more affordable housing is needed, and 74 percent feel the city should be spending more on affordable housing. HousingNOLA is stressing its new “Put Housing First” campaign to increase public engagement involving affordable housing policy at the local and state level. With recovery funds from Katrina nearly exhausted the city can create about 1500 affordable units per year – however, last year fell short by 61. This years goal is expected to fall short by over 1000 units, the following year’s goal of 2561 affordable units is unlikely to be met.
The Report Card Report was made available to the membership on the back table with another case of reports being dropped off soon to UNITY for distribution. Ms. Kegel offered help in planning an Action Day at the City Council that the SPPA membership could participate in.
Non-Partisan Mayoral Candidates Forum on Homelessness
Mr. Clarence Adams, chair of the Advocacy Committee, stated that at least 200 people attended the September 15 forum held at UNITY Christian Church sponsored by UNITY and the SPPA. A video of the forum featuring the 5-candidates participating in the forum, former Judge Michael Bagneris, Councilmember LaToya Cantrell, former Judge Desiree Charbonnet, Mr. Troy Henry, and Mr. Tommie Vassel is available for viewing on Facebook. Mr. Adams stated that New Orleans will have it first female mayor, both candidates in the run-off election, Ms. Cantrell, and Ms. Charbonnet, have worked with UNITY and the homeless.
Mr. Adams encouraged SPPA members to participate in the Advocacy Committee meetings. The next meeting is scheduled on Monday, October 23 at 1 pm in UNITY’s 3rd floor conference room. November 18 is the date of the runoff election. There are still a number of upcoming forums for the mayor’s and city council races that the membership was encouraged to attend.
Coordinated ENTRY System for Permanent Supportive Housing
Ms. Demetra Phoenix reminded everyone that the navigator meetings for veterans and chronic clients are held every Monday with the chronic client meeting at 1:00 pm and the homeless veterans meeting at 2:00 pm. The group is now permanently meeting at the UNITY Baronne Street building, located at 2407 Baronne Street. Ms. Phoenix encouraged everyone to contact Ms. Robbie Keen if you are interested in attending these meetings, and she will add you to the email reminder list for the meeting. These meeting are used to provide ongoing communication about Coordinated Entry cases and are a good opportunity to follow-up on any cases to see where the client might be in the housing process. During the Monday meeting, Ms. Gaines-Girard and Ms. Phoenix can review your client’s paperwork to see if anything is missing to complete the housing applications. For help with the application or with homeless documentation, please email or call Ms. Gaines-Girard firstname.lastname@example.org, Ms. Phoenix at email@example.com, or Ms. Kathleen North at firstname.lastname@example.org, 899-4589.
Ms. Vicki Judice, Executive Director of the Harry Tompson Center, announced that the Rebuild Center will hold a fish fry today from 1-3pm. For For more information, contact Ms. Judice at 504-273-5547, ext. 1.
Ms. Mashon stated that Open Enrollment for health care coverage through the Health Market Place for 2018 began on November 1 and will end on December 15. For additional information and to sign-up go to www.HealthCare.gov. Ms. Mashon stated that it is necessary to sign-up yearly for the coverage.
Ms. Patterson announced that UNITY was contacted by Second Harvesters Food Bank regarding the donation to them of fresh flowers. Second Harvesters is donating the flowers to various non-profits for use at their facilities. For additional information regarding the flower give-away, contact Emily, at 504-884-1098.
Mr. Adams invited everyone to attend the Street Requiem; Impacting Homelessness Through the Arts, Thursday, November 2 at 7:30pm. The event is being held at the Academy of the Sacred Heart NIMS Center, 4301 St. Charles Ave. Mr. Adams stated that SPPA member agencies are invited to receive 2 complimentary tickets to the event. The Symphony Chorus of New Orleans and others will perform. For additional information, contact Ms. Shanda Jordan-Smith, 504-523-1184.
Following a motion and a second, the meeting was adjourned at 11:20am.