In response to increased concerns regarding the County of Orange’s decision to displace a large volume of individuals currently residing along the Santa Ana Riverbed, a Quality of Life Team (QOLT) was established.
Starting on January 22, 2018, the City of Santa Ana adopted and kicked off this “pilot” interdepartmental team to address quality of life issues throughout the City that will run for a period of 30 days utilizing existing resources. This group was comprised of staff from the offices of SAPD, Parks and Recreation, Public Works, Community Development , Community Preservation , City Attorney and the City Manager.
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Staff was tasked to triage and perform problem solving initiatives Citywide regarding homelessness. This process of bringing all stakeholders together in the field was modeled on best practices utilized by several cities throughout the Country.
Following are highlights on the initial two days of the team’s operation:
- On Tuesday the 23rd, the team received training from the City Attorney’s office and Police Department. It then rolled out and responded to 7 locations identified, via Council and community complaints, contacting 18 people currently residing on the streets. Of the 18 persons contacted, only 3 requested assistance; 2 individuals were housed in the Courtyard Shelter and the remaining person is set to return to Reno following the purchase of a bus ticket through a donated fund for these purposes. All locations were tagged for removal of property per City policy.
- On Wednesday the 24th, the team stored approximately half of a container with abandoned items and removed over 4 large trucks full of debris from City streets and alleys.
Moving forward, the team will focus on parks and responding to complaints of individuals establishing encampments throughout the City.
Requests for service are processed via the My Santa Ana app or by calling Public Works Dispatch at (714) 647-3380.