City creating new position to coordinate homeless resources

Alaska Mental Health Trust Authority Chief Operating Officer Steve Williams, left, Chief Communications Officer Carley Lawrence, center, and Executive Director John Morrison watch as Juneau Police Department Officers serve eviction notices on homeless encampments on Tuesday, Aug. 22, 2017. (Michael Penn | Juneau Empire)

Juneau Empire

 

In response to rising homelessness in town, the City and Borough of Juneau is creating a new staff position.

The CBJ applied Monday for a grant from the Alaska Mental Health Trust Authority to create a Housing and Homeless Services Coordinator position to help coordinate local services for the homeless. The Trust Authority, which raises money for Alaska’s mental health services, currently funds homeless coordinators in Anchorage and Fairbanks.

According to a job description provided by the city, the “CBJ recognizes a need to better coordinate local housing and social services that assist persons experiencing homelessness, including the chronically homeless, youth, veterans, families and victims of domestic violence.”

The creation of this position follows the creation of the CBJ’s Assembly Task Force on Homelessness. The job description says that the position is expected to be in place for three years.

Officials from the Trust Authority were in town Tuesday to serve notices of trespassing to homeless campers on Trust Authority land in Juneau. Carley Lawrence, the chief communications officer for the Trust Authority, said the process has already begun.

“We just received a grant request from the City and Borough of Juneau yesterday,” Lawrence said Tuesday, “so we will be reviewing that as staff and bringing that forward to our board for consideration.”

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