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Background on the Regional Homelessness Authority

Spring 2018

In May 2018, King County Executive Dow Constantine and Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan committed to increasing coordination of regional homeless services and investments across King County. The purpose was to improve services for people experiencing homelessness by improving the alignment of those services and investments. 

Summer / Fall 2018

King County, Seattle, and All Home hired National Innovation Service (NIS) to analyze the current homeless response system through policy analysis and customer and provider engagement, and make recommendations to unify and redesign the systems based on equity and impact. Their findings and recommendations are summarized in 10 Actions to guide transformation.

At the same time, All Home identified Corporation for Supported Housing (CSH) to provide support for the transition of the Continuum of Care (CoC).

Winter / Spring 2019

In December, County Executive Constantine and Mayor Durkan accepted the NIS report and recommendations to transform and unify the region’s homeless services. Joining the city and county, leaders from the Sound Cities Association, All Home, business, philanthropy, and the Lived Experience Coalition identified the following four actions as top priorities to begin the work:

  • Institute a system-wide theory of change
  • Consolidate homelessness response systems under one regional authority
  • Become accountable to customers
  • Create a defined public/private partnership utilizing a funder collaborative model

As part of this work, NIS was chosen to serve as project managers to support the development of these four actions.

Simultaneously, philanthropic partners contracted with CSH to develop a Regional Action Plan, a critical tool to guide and align our work across the community. Data and investment analyses conducted between the fall of 2018 and early 2019 will offer a baseline of local data to inform the development of the Regional Action Plan.

Summer 2019

Both the process to transform the region’s homeless services and the development of the Regional Action Plan will require close collaboration with community members and key stakeholders, including opportunities for elected officials, agency staff, service and housing providers, people with lived experience of homelessness and homeless advocacy organizations, business and philanthropic leaders, faith communities and others interested and committed to improving the regional homeless system to brainstorm and weigh in on the most effective means for unifying homeless services and improving and strengthening our regional response to homelessness.  

In addition to developing the Regional Action Plan, CSH will continue to support the Continuum of Care in preparing to adjust its governance structure to align with both the new consolidated authority and with the theory of change. This entails the development and adoption of a new CoC governance charter and redefining seats on the Continuum of Care Board.

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