Individual Services Committee – May 24, 2012

In attendance: Danielle DeBerry, ServiceNet, Carl Cignoni, Hampshire Sheriff and DOC Re-entry, Jen Glover, FCHCC, Janice Humason, Friends of the Homeless, Jay Levy, Eliot CHS – Homeless Services, Dave Modzelewski, Mental Health Association, Claudia Phillips, Health Care for the Homeless, Maureen Normand, Eliot CHS, Wanda Rolon, ServiceNet, Pamela Schwartz, network coordinator, Laura Waskiewicz, Franklin County Sheriff, Chris Zabik, Dept. of Mental Health, Kurt Zellen, VA Medical Center

State Budget Update:

Network funding amendment filed; Senate voting today.

Friends of the Homeless:  Senator Candaras filed amendment to increase nightly bed rate to $30/night.  FOH  day programming is at issue without increased rate.

PATH program (Eliot CHS):  mainly federal dollars with state match – funds protected since for every state dollar, feds put in 2.

House of Corrections staff for HIV education and testing:  federal defunding of these positions in MA.  Senator Rosenberg is trying to put back in state dollars.

Housing Authority follow-up meeting brainstorm:

First meeting on 5/3 a great success with great turn-out.  Laid the foundation with information and vision.  Next meeting on 6/18 (9-11 am, Holyoke Community College, Frost Building, Picknelly Dining Room) is opportunity to hear directly from housing authorities, about their challenges and needs.

We agreed that our goal is to having housing authorities feel heard and supported; to build relationships between housing authority staff and service providers, to build systems for communication, inform housing authorities about available resources, eg SAMHSA clinical supports.

Agreed we need to get educated about emergency priorities, baseline on federal and state level and then the priorities as implemented on a local level. Pamela will follow-up with DHCD to get state/fed guidelines.  Then learn more from housing authorities on 6/18.

Agreed that we will divide up by county for this meeting, have discussion on a sub-regional meetings.

Agreed that our real measure of success for this next meeting is that housing authorities feel invested in being part of this effort, building collaborations, to feel the potential for useful partnerships.

Shelter update:

Northampton interfaith cot shelter: closed on 4/30 – housed some, others “out there”

Hampshire County drop-in center – in process of moving to cot shelter

full to capacity (although lighter than usual over Mother’s Day weekend).  Rescue Mission closing shortly for the season.

Samaratin Inn: Increased our capacity women by five beds, which filled very quickly.

SAMHSA Mission West  update:  biggest challenge is people being connected to housing before connecting to support service and then rejecting the offer of support services.  Working on engaging people prior to housing opportunity

SMOC housing units delayed.  New shelter plus care units coming on in July.

Working Group to House Individuals with Sex Offense History:  Valley CDC deferred meeting on this issue due to other pressing issues they’re facing right now.  Work group is  now reaching out to HAP for further exploration.  Will revisit progress and next steps at next meeting on 6/13.

Next meeting:  Agreed that the next housing authority meeting on 6/18 will take the space for our June meeting and will reconvene to debrief about the housing authority meeting and other issues.

Next meeting date:  Thursday, July 5, 9:30 am – 11:30 am, Northampton Senior Center (subject to confirmation)

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