Dallas City Council Set to Approve $2.3M for 16 Additional Homeless Outreach Workers

Dallas City Council plans to allocate $2.3 million to expand homeless outreach services, addressing issues highlighted in a recent report on the city’s homeless problem.

The Dallas City Council is anticipated to greenlight a $2.3 million contract, approving the allocation for 16 additional homeless outreach workers. The move comes following recommendations from a recent report addressing the city’s homelessness challenges.

The approved funds will go towards expanding homeless outreach services, with Housing Forward, the organization succeeding the Metro Dallas Housing Alliance, leading the efforts. While progress is evident, Housing Forward Chair Peter Brodsky acknowledges that more work lies ahead.

Brodsky credits the reduction in homelessness to substantial federal funding from the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) and an overhaul of the coordinating organization for homeless care across various non-profits.

Councilwoman Gay Donnell Willis highlights the visible issue of unsheltered homeless in encampments, emphasizing the need for effective strategies. Brodsky suggests exploring low-barrier shelters to accommodate individuals with drug habits, though acknowledging the controversial nature of the idea.

While the Housing Forward interim CEO notes the positive impact of additional outreach workers in connecting people to permanent housing, challenges persist. The Hope Task Force reveals that 95% of homeless individuals in encampments express a desire for permanent housing.

As Dallas addresses homelessness collaboratively, the City Council’s approval signals a commitment to enhancing outreach services and finding comprehensive solutions to support those in need.

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