DECLARATION OF EMERGENCY - Homelessness Response in Bellingham, WA - Whatcom County

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INCLUDING BUT NOT LIMITED TO DIRECTIVES OF RCW STATE GUIDELINES Homelessness Housing and Assistance Act (Ch. 43.185C RCW) for addressing homelessness, we the people ask the CITY to DECLARE ITS RIGHTFUL AUTHORITY and responsibility in leadership ACTION to address the alarming headcount of unhoused population in Bellingham, WA, and to do so by ACTION in accordance of meeting the needs of the unhoused population who are in crisis.

PROVISIONS REQUIRED FOR UNHOUSED POPULATION

·        AFFORDABLE HOUSING AND/OR SHELTER

·        PUBLIC 24/7 ACCESS TO TOILETS

·        PUBLIC 24/7 ACCESS TO FREE STORAGE

·        PERMISSIBLE PARKING FOR VEHICLES

·        SATISFACTORY MEASURES AND ADDITIONAL PROVISIONS FOR MEETING DAILY BASIC NEEDS

·        EMERGENCY SHELTER IN IMMEDIATE REAL-TIME (IN ADDITION TO LONG-TERM PLANNING OBJECTIVES)

·        SPECIALIZED SHELTER FOR “SPECIAL NEEDS” (as defined by chronic illness, unstable physical/mental health, and/or any such impairment or disability causing exacerbated vulnerability when participating in current shelter settings)

ASSESSMENT OF CITY CONDITIONS:  

·        RECONSTRUCTION OF PIT ANALYSIS AND ASSESSMENT OF HOMELESSNESS CENSUS REPORTS

·        ESTABLISH LOCATIONS FOR IMPLEMENTING IMMEDIATE WINTER WEATHER SHELTER 

·        PREVENTATIVE ACTION AND IMPLEMENTATION FOR BOTH EMERGENCY AND DAILY NEED 

·        ANALYSIS TO DETERMINE AND ADDRESS CONFLICT OF INTEREST OR BARRIERS TO CITY ACTION

·        ENACTMENT OF SANCTIONED ENCAMPMENTS WHEN VIABLE SHELTER IS NOT ADEQUATE FOR PROVIDING OCCUPANCY FOR UNHOUSED POPULATION, INCLUDING BOTH GENERAL POPULATIONS AND THOSE IN DIRE CONDITIONS WITH “SPECIAL NEEDS”

 

To Kelli Linville: We the people ask that you make a formal DECLARATION OF CITY EMERGENCY if the city is incapacitated to ACT INDEPENDENTLY TO ACCOMPLISH THESE TASKS FOR PUBLIC HEALTH AND SAFETY with determination that outside intervention for additional resources and management from the COUNTY and/or STATE as well as EMERGENCY TASK FORCES be implemented if the City is ineffective in addressing the homelessness criteria stated above and refuses to act in the best interest of the people.  

AND LASTLY, the people seek a concentrated effort of priority to consider and  ALLEVIATE BARRIERS that prevent COMMUNITY OUTREACH WITHIN THE PRIVATE AND BUSINESS SECTOR and the burden that has been unrealistically and unfairly placed on the private sector. It is an obligation of the CITY to remedy homelessness and delegate the duties of assistance to the people in partnership and collaborative effort with NON-PROFIT ORGANIZATIONS (BOTH RELIGIOUS AND OTHER) THAT CAN ASSIST THE CITY IN THIS EFFORT OF PROVIDING VIABLE SHELTER/HOUSING; however, it is the duty of the CITY to provide this assistance by RCW State Guidelines for addressing homelessness. 

IMPLEMENTATION OF SOLUTIONS FOR ADDRESSING HOMELESSNESS INCLUDE BUT ARE NOT LIMITED TO:  

·        PROVIDING BOTH TEMPORARY AND LONG-TERM SHELTER(S) FOR UNHOUSED PERSONS BASED ON HUMAN NEEDS

·        LOCATING AND ADDRESSING THE “SPECIAL NEEDS” POPULATION CURRENTLY ISOLATED FROM ACCESSING COMMON-USE FACILITIES

PUBLIC DECLARATION OF THE PEOPLE: CURRENT SHELTER OPTIONS ESTABLISHED IN COORDINATION WITH THE CITY AS EXISTING NON-PROFIT AGENCIES ARE LIMITED IN THEIR CAPACITY TO SUPPORT THE ENTIRE UNHOUSED POPULATION DUE TO FACTORS OF SIZE, UNSATISFACTORY RESOLUTION TO DESIGNATE CITY SHELTER EXPANSION, CONTRADICTIONS OF STANDARD OF CARE, CONFLICT OF INTEREST WITH THE COMMUNITY THEY SERVE, NEGLIGIBLE OPTIONS FOR THOSE WITH “SPECIAL NEEDS”, AND A LACK OF VIABLE SUPPORT, WHICH HAS RESULTED IN BARRIERS FOR IMPROVEMENTS AND/OR LACK OF SERVICES FOR BELLINGHAM WA UNHOUSED POPULATION.

IMMEDIATE RESPONSIVENESS IS REQUIRED BY OUR CITY OFFICIALS TO OFFSET FURTHER CRISIS AND APPROACHING WEATHER HAZARDS THAT POSE UNFORSEEN THREAT, ILLNESS, AND DEATH TO THOSE UNSHELTERED  LIVING ON THE STREET, AS WELL AS PREVENTATIVE ACTION THAT PERTAINS TO PUBLIC HEALTH AND SAFETY REPERCUSSIONS THAT ARE INCUMBENT TO THE ENTIRE CITY WHEN LIVES ARE LOST. 

We the people ask you, Mayor Kelli Linville and the members of Bellingham City Council to in your civic duty and representation of the people you serve (whose advocacy in this petition is in support of housing our unhoused residents) to ACT NOW in accordance with RCW State Law, for measures of proper human responsiveness in sheltering our unhoused population with priority.



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