Homeless Must be on Local Boards

The Cleveland City Council has passed out of the Community Development committee passing $1.25 million on to 14 social service agencies as part of the Emergency Shelter Grant allocation from the Department of Housing and Urban Development. There was an additional $400,000 increase that was reserved for additional programming in 1999.

            Two council members attached amendments that would require homeless people on every board of trustees that receive public money and staff training around the recognition and protocol for clients with AIDS. The legislation unanimously passed out of the committee and is expected to pass the full council in December.

            Councilman Frank Jackson held a meeting with 125 homeless people on November 21 to discuss priorities and needs of those on the streets. He intends to use the suggestions raised at the community forum as the basis for spending the remaining Emergency Shelter grant.

            Councilman Joe Cimperman of the Downtown ward attached an amendment which requires all agencies that receive money to have at least two homeless people on their board of directors and at least two social workers from collaborating agencies. The rules would take effect six months after the legislations passed. Cimperman is a former outreach worker for West Side Catholic shelter.

            Councilwoman Merle Gordon attached an amendment that all shelter workers be trained in AIDS protocol and practices.

            All the agencies were funded at 1998 levels. The $400,000 additional funds will be distributed in early 1999.

Copyright for the Homeless Grapevine NEOCH December 1998 – January 1999