MY POSITIONS ON ADDRESSING TRANSIENTS AND HOMELESSNESS

I completely understand the concerns that parents have over the risks posed to their families and homes caused by transients, and the fear over bringing their children to the Library or Boulder Creek area. Our fundamental priority should be to ensure that everyone feels safe. If elected, I will work to increase the resources dedicated to outreach and enforcement efforts.

Despite our relative wealth, Boulder encounters many challenges that other cities face, including homelessness, addiction, and mental illness. On issues related to homeless and human services, I believe that City Council should provide clear direction and appropriate funding so that the City’s Human Services division is empowered with the resources and support they need to implement the City’s Homeless Service Work Plan. This plan improves the day-to-day experience of homeless individuals and families, mandates enhanced coordination between funders and key stakeholders, and emphasizes the creation of housing-based solutions to move people off the streets.

Boulder has been a leader in providing and funding human services since the 1960s. We have a long history of making these services available for at-risk populations, and we need to continue this. The City should continue to partner with subject matter experts like Bridge House because they are best suited to provide recommendations and are most knowledgeable on best practices. And, I believe the City of Boulder can play a valuable role in facilitating efficient service delivery, and can bring nonprofits together with the goal of streamlining services and creating effective public-private partnerships.

Finally, I note that many of my friends were included in the evacuation zone caused by the Sunshine Canyon fire. The risks posed to our homes and Open Spaces by errant fires, started by illegal homeless camps, is something that we must pursue with diligence and enhanced enforcement. 

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