County Board of Supervisors takes further action to reduce homelessness


VENTURA, Calif. – On Tuesday, February 27, the Ventura County Board of Supervisors adopted significant measures to combat homelessness with a proactive approach aimed at reducing the number of individuals facing housing instability. The actions taken by the Board reflect a comprehensive strategy outlined in the Updated Plan to Prevent and End Homelessness, as presented by LeSar Development Consultants on December 19, 2023, and align with the Board’s adopted Strategic Plan Priority to Address Homelessness and Lift Up the Most Vulnerable.

Recognizing the urgency of the issue, the Board has adopted recommendations to address homelessness from multiple angles, including homelessness prevention and rapid re-housing, housing prioritization, regional coordination, outreach, service delivery, data-driven decision making, and representation.

The actions taken by the Board represent a multifaceted approach to reducing homelessness, including the application for up to $2.6 million in homeless housing, assistance, and prevention funding through the Ventura County Continuum of Care. This funding will support two years of homelessness prevention efforts, aiming to keep up to 500 households in stable housing.

The actions of the Board include the addition of fifteen full-time positions across various departments, including the Human Services Agency, County Executive Office, and Sheriff’s Office. These positions will bolster the County’s capacity to address homelessness effectively and efficiently, with an increasingly coordinated and agile approach.

Two new homeless services social worker positions that support an expanded homelessness prevention program, and a homeless services program assistant position supporting homeless data analysis are included as part of the expanded staffing. Additionally, Homeless and Housing Solutions Director positions are being created to provide oversight, implementation guidance, and to facilitate coordination both within the County government and with external partners. The Housing Solutions Director position will focus on housing development strategies and financing of affordable housing through partnerships with housing developers and local governments to fill the gaps in housing availability. This position will seek new resources, pursue innovative development strategies, and maximize the creation of new units in areas of greatest unmet need.

Also, as part of the new position allocations, the Sheriff’s Office will expand its homeless liaison unit with the addition of eight deputies and two sergeants. The expanded unit will provide increased support to connect unhoused individuals with services, provide security to 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.

“This is a huge endeavor, and it really shows that we are breaking down the silos and working together in teams for the good of the community,” said Supervisor Kelly Long, Chair of the Board of Supervisors. “We know that homelessness isn’t going to be solved with just a roof. Comprehensive services need to be there. There are so many reasons why people are homeless, and we should think about each one differently and vary our approach with each one.”

By taking these bold actions to implement the recommendations contained in the Updated Plan to Prevent and End Homelessness, the County aims 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 steadfast in its commitment to addressing homelessness and providing comprehensive support to those in need.

For more information about the steps taken by the Board please visit: