San Diego Opens New Facility for Unsheltered Residents With Substance Abuse, Mental Health Challenges – NBC 7 San Diego

The Community Harm Reduction Team facility opened for homeless San Diego residents with substance abuse and mental illness issues Wednesday.

Mayor Todd Gloria said: “San Digan can see it all over our city – many of our homeless neighbors are very sick and need professional help. It’s a serious crisis.” “Our current shelters are not suitable for everyone.

“This new shelter represents the latest step in our efforts to respond to displacement and will create an entry point for people who have had difficulty connecting to the safer shelter and more intensive support services they need,” he said.

C-HRT is a joint effort between county and city behavioral health services to connect eligible people to “shelter, case management, permanent housing, behavioral health services, and Medicare,” according to a statement from the new facility.

The city-owned facility, located in the former Pier 1 Imports building in the Midway community, will consist of 24-hour staff and 44 beds managed by the Alpha Project through a contract with the San Diego Housing Commission. Outreach and case management will be handled by the San Diego Family Health Centers through a contract with the county.

“Community harm reduction teams and temporary shelters are a new approach between county and city to get people off the streets and provide the support they need in their battle against addiction,” said Nathan Fletcher, chair of the county’s Board of Supervisors. “This new effort provides a great opportunity for the homeless in San Diego to walk the path of wellness, stability, and permanent housing.”

A new space has opened for unprotected San Diegans in Midway to provide them with a roof over their heads and beds and a place to practice safe hygiene. NBC 7’s Nicole Gomez shares what other services this shelter will offer.

According to the city, San Diego Family Health Centers will provide substance abuse counselors, peer support, mental health physicians and nurse practitioners for medical advice.

“What we’re releasing today is different from something we’ve done in the past, which is an acknowledgment that there is a class of individuals who are homeless and have very serious problems,” Fletcher said. “Very severe substance abuse issues, possibly alcohol dependence, mental health issues, a category of people for whom a lot of regular education and housing programs aren’t enough.”

The Alpha Project intends to maintain a clean and safe environment and discourage loitering near the shelter.

In addition, the city and county are expanding the C-HRT program to include additional locations — called C-HRT Safe Havens — that can provide care for clients with a more serious level of behavioral health challenges.


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