Home>Articles>‘Homeless Equity for Left Behind Populations’ Act Bill Passes Senate Committee

Senator Susan Rubio (Photo: Kevin Sanders for California Globe)

‘Homeless Equity for Left Behind Populations’ Act Bill Passes Senate Committee

‘Domestic violence services for individuals experiencing homelessness have been grossly underfunded’

By Evan Symon, March 31, 2022 12:56 pm

A bill requiring county, city, and continuum of care homeless services that receive state funding, which must ensure that all the needs of domestic violence survivors, unaccompanied women, and transgendered individuals experiencing homelessness are met, passed the Senate Human Services Committee on Thursday.

Senate Bill 914, authored by Senator Susan Rubio (D-Baldwin Park), would specifically have homeless services ensure that the needs of of those groups are incorporated into homeless planning and responses by January 1, 2023. Specifically, they would be included as ‘vulnerable populations” to receive specific system supports. SB 914, also known as the Homeless Equity for Left Behind Populations (HELP) Act, would also help develop better information systems to get better information about the needs of domestic survivor victims and other groups targeted by the bill due to current federal limits on entering database information about them because of confidentiality requirements. These new comparable systems would then be used to help better address homelessness in these populations.

The California Interagency Council on Homelessness would also set and measure progress toward goals to prevent and end homelessness among domestic violence survivors and their children and among unaccompanied women in California. These goals would be established by January 2025, with goals updated every two years as new information dictates.

Senator Rubio wrote the bill to help counter gender bias and disparities currently in state and county-level homeless programs and to focus on populations like domestic violence survivors due to current information gaps that don’t bring their needs into homelessness plans.

“Unsheltered women and unsheltered transgender individuals report shockingly high numbers of domestic violence,” the Senator said in a statement Thursday. “As our state and local governments continue to work toward ending the homeless crisis, we must make sure that we do not leave any part of the homeless population behind. Domestic violence services for individuals experiencing homelessness have been grossly underfunded, and the HELP Act is needed to help these vulnerable populations and focus on their unique needs.”

SB 914 has received a lot of support since being introduced in February, with many homeless groups and organizations around support for domestic violence victims coming out in support of the bill.

“We’re grateful to the Human Services Committee for recognizing the inextricable link between domestic violence and homelessness,” California Partnership to End Domestic Violence Public Policy Director Krista Colon said. “We are excited to see SB 914 move forward to its next hearing in Senate Housing. This important bill will ensure state and local governments will be one step closer to creating a gender-inclusive and intersectional homelessness system that will support survivors as they heal. This is one important element of the Partnership’s economic justice work.”

No major opposition has come out against the bill as of Thursday, as shown by previous Committee votes that have passed unanimously.

“It’s one of those bills that fix a problem that people don’t usually think we have,” said Los Angeles homeless shelter volunteer Matt Bunning to the Globe on Thursday. “For people escaping domestic violence situations, they don’t want any information about them to be out there. It’s not just a confidentiality thing, but a safety thing. If someone looking for them manages to get access to the system, they can find all sorts of things about them, including where they are now. But since we don’t get that information on them, as well as other groups like transgendered people because we really haven’t had their needs considered before, there are gaps right now in the current system.

“With this bill, we’ll help better serve everyone. Right now we’ve left people behind. This shouldn’t happen, especially for those needing help to avoid violence or experiencing homelessness in such a vulnerable way. This helps bridges the gaps.”

SB 914 is expected to move through the Senate in the coming weeks.

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4 thoughts on “‘Homeless Equity for Left Behind Populations’ Act Bill Passes Senate Committee

  1. Why so much legislation for the “transgendered” population??
    Why are the issues of a tiny minority of the population driving the legislative issues of California???
    Or is this the social justice warrior “flavor of the month”???
    Or, is this part of their depopulation plans, to get people messing with their gender identities and sterilizing children with hormone treatments???
    These are evil people and we are in very evil times…
    Rise up against these forces of darkness, people…

    1. Transgender is the favored vehicle of the left today to undermine civilized society. Go ahead and try to think of something more fundamentally common-sense for human beings and the animal kingdom than what your sex is and what that means. I bet you can’t! THAT’S why the left has chosen it to pound into oblivion. They know that brainwashing and confusion about something so basic as this will create societal chaos. The guy with the horns and the hairy legs LOVES this stuff. It must stop.

    2. Besides, as far as this bill goes, such poster-child sob-story stuff is always misleading and is actually a purposeful distraction from the problem. Why are these legislators banging on carve-outs for special interest groups anyway? ANY special interest groups? Approaching homeless/vagrancy in a sensible and effective way would mean that the problems of the groups mentioned would take care of themselves. But the Homeless Industrial Complex is interested in its own survival and wealth-building and slush fund distribution and will always oppose following a model that works.

    3. The more crutches you give people the less they will try to straighten themselves out! Why should they become productive citizens when they get everything they want given to them. I am tired of paying taxes for people that do not want to be accountable for their actions!

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