County officials hold press conference to present recent actions taken to address homelessness


VENTURA, Calif. – On Monday, March 11, officials from the Ventura County Board of Supervisors, Medical Examiner’s Office, Ventura County Behavioral Health, and the Ventura County Sheriff’s Office provided an update on steps taken to proactively approach reducing the number of individuals facing housing instability. Addressing recent concerns about unhoused individuals’ access to services and support, officials shared information about the expansion of services across County agencies.

“The plight of each of our unhoused neighbors is complicated,” stated 2nd District Supervisor Jeff Gorell. “It requires an all-hands-on-deck approach. That’s what we are doing in the County of Ventura through the bold actions from the Board of Supervisors and recently adopted initiatives through the Strategic Plan Priority to Address Homelessness and lift up the most vulnerable.”

The County Board of Supervisor’s recently adopted Strategic Plan Priority to Address Homelessness provides a multifaceted approach to reducing homelessness and builds upon previous actions by the Board through the following focus areas:

  • Application for up to $2.6 million in homeless housing, assistance, and prevention funding through the Ventura County Continuum of Care to support up to 500 households with stable housing.
  • Addition of 15 full-time positions across the Human Services Agency, County Executive Office and Sheriff’s Office.
  • Homeless and Housing Solutions Director positions to provide oversight, implementation guidance, and facilitate coordination between County government, cities and community partners.
  • Expansion of the Homeless Liaison Unit within the Sheriff’s Office providing increased support to connect unhoused individuals with services, support social and health care workers on coordinated field outreach teams, facilitate cleanups, and actively engage with the community to educate and build relationships with most vulnerable populations.

“Homelessness tends to exacerbate mental health and substance disorders,” said Dr. Loretta Denering, Interim Director of Ventura County Behavior Health. “As a result, Ventura County Behavioral Health continues to work tirelessly alongside our community partners to provide the programs and support to community members living without a permanent residence.”

The actions taken by the Board of Supervisors in supporting the implementation of the Updated Plan to Prevent and End Homelessness aim to make homelessness rare, brief, and non-recurring.

As the Ventura County Continuum of Care finalizes the 2024 Homeless Point-In-Time Count report to be published in April, the County remains committed to providing comprehensive support to those in need and addressing homelessness in the community.