Sacramento Regional Coalition to End Homelessness

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Sacramento Regional Coalition to End Homelessness is building a movement within and beyond the Sacramento, CA region to address the discrimination of people experiencing homelessness, demonstrating a strong analysis of the issues with a multi-layered approach to creating solutions.

Address:
1331 Garden Highway, Suite 100
Sacramento, CA 95833
www.srceh.org

Mission:

Sacramento Regional Coalition to End Homelessness’ mission is to end and prevent homelessness in the Sacramento region through policy analysis, community education, collective organizing, advocacy and civic engagement.

History:

Founded in in 2013 because there was no homeless advocacy coalition in the community, SRCEH has published reports and factsheets on homelessness in the area; trained other organizations in civic engagement efforts; and advocated for greater access to shelters, better treatment of homeless patients discharged from hospitals, and greater access to public bathrooms.

The Issues:

There are between 7,500-10,000 homeless people in Sacramento County annually, 56% of whom live outside. They are disproportionately people of color, and include 1,000 unaccompanied youth, 40% of whom identify as LGBTQ. Homeless people face continued criminalization, lack of affordable housing, lack of safety for those who sleep in their vehicles and outside, and lack of access to bathrooms and sanitation. The Sacramento Mayor has recently challenged Sacramento’s eight city council members to create 100 new shelter beds in each of their districts, but faces pushback from residents who do not want new shelters in their neighborhoods. In their Neighborhood Advocates for Shelter and Homes campaign, SRCEH is working to bring together 100 homeless and housed people in each district to advocate for better the shelters and for affordable housing.

Constituency and Leadership:

SRCEH is a coalition of people currently and formerly experiencing homelessness, advocates, direct service providers, the interfaith community, labor and civil rights advocates. SRCEH meets with homeless people individually and collectively, conducts focus groups and surveys, and presents issues to the SRCEH Board. One third of SRCEH’s board members are people with lived experience, and they reflect the diversity of homeless issues. The Board strives for consensus and to honor priorities from homeless people and members. SRCEH has three committees: Homeless Civil Rights Committee, Homeless Employment Advocacy Committee and Sacramento Hunger Coalition Steering Committee.

Tackling Oppressive Structures:

SRCEH frames their advocacy work on homelessness and food insecurity in the context of the structural reasons that underpin these crises, including racism, discrimination, and economic inequality combined with failed polices related to affordable housing, mental health, addiction and public health care. SRCEH’s guiding principles emphasize how public policymakers must address these underlying structural issues: that accessible housing, healthy food and good health are basic human rights; that people experiencing homelessness should not be criminalized; and that current and formerly homeless people must be active and equal participants in decision-making bodies that address homelessness.

Movement Building:

For their Neighborhood Advocates for Shelter and Homes campaign, SRCEH has partnered with Sacramento Area Congregations Together and the Sacramento Housing Alliance. Additionally, SRCEH partners with organizations in the community devoted to the larger movement for social justice, like the National Coalition for the Homeless; National Housing Not Handcuffs Campaign; Western Regional Advocacy Project; Sacramento Homeless Organizing Committee;  and the Alliance for Californians for Community Empowerment (formerly ACORN).

Evaluation:

SRCEH will evaluate their success based on the leadership development of currently and formerly homeless leaders and the addition of new organizational supporters and new community alliances and partnerships. SRCEH will further evaluate their success based on the growth of SRCEH’s visibility through media and social media, building awareness of discrimination of homeless people, reframing the issue of discrimination for protection of homeless people’s civil rights, and building public will for proactive alternatives to the criminalization of homeless people.

Long-term Vision for Change:

SRCEH aims to decriminalize homelessness in their community and shift the focus and resources on long-term, systemic change to end and prevent homelessness, including the creation of affordable and accessible housing, mental health and substance abuse treatment on demand, and employment and livable incomes.

Organization Budget:  $193,001
Request: $10,000

Raised to date this week: $4,035

You can support SRCEH by clicking on the Donate button below: