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San Diego County supervisors OK plan to help homeless veterans

Posted at 5:32 PM, Feb 07, 2023
and last updated 2023-02-07 20:32:10-05

SAN DIEGO (CNS) - The county Board of Supervisors Tuesday unanimously approved the development of a plan to help homeless veterans find a place to live.

As proposed by Supervisors Nathan Fletcher and Nora Vargas, the plan could be ready in April and feature input from community groups, government representatives, and people who have experienced homelessness.

The county will also work with partners to find additional resources, remove housing barriers for veterans, offer vouchers, and quickly match veterans with housing.

A Marine Corps combat veteran, Fletcher on Jan. 20 announced the proposal during an event with veterans and homeless advocates.

"In recent years we have started to see the veteran homelessness number decline in San Diego, and now is the time we must accelerate the efforts to functionally end veteran homelessness," Fletcher said in a statement. "I am ready to put in the work."

Last year's Point in Time Count showed the San Diego region has nearly 700 homeless veterans, and about half of them were staying in temporary shelters, Fletcher said.

Nora Vargas, board chairwoman, said the county has "a responsibility to take care of those who served our country, and we must invest in programs that will help our veterans thrive when they integrate into civilian life."

Fletcher recently said regional political leaders, including Rep. Mike Levin and Assemblyman Chris Ward, will help bring more resources to San Diego County.

According to Fletcher's office, the coalition on the effort includes the San Diego County Office of Military and Veteran Affairs, San Diego Veterans Coalition, San Diego Veterans For Peace, Zero8hundred, and Vets' Community Connections.

Last month, supervisors approved more help for veterans coming out of the justice system who are at risk of becoming homeless or living on the streets.