Homeless and Unhoused Working Group
CHARGE BY THE BCNA STEERING COMMITTEE:
The Working Group will establish a position that identifies the many concerns of encampments in the West Bouldin Creek Greenbelt. The document will outline objectives regarding Bouldin Creek Neighborhood Association’s role in bringing awareness to the growing illegal encampments. It will also encourage a prompt response by the City of Austin to eliminate the encampments located in the following locations.
- Nicholas Dawson Park
- West Bouldin Creek Greenbelt
- Ricky Guerrero Park
Success will require coordinated involvement by the BCNA, the City of Austin Parks Department, Austin Public Health, Water Shed Department, City Council, City Manager and Nonprofit organizations. Success will also result in a sustainable plan that eliminates the reoccurrence of encampments and is routinely enforced.
CHRONOLOGY OF WORKING GROUP MAILINGS/MEETINGS WITH CITY & OTHERS:
- 1/9/2023. Announced intention to organize a Homeless/Unhoused Working Group
- 1/28/2023 Point in Time – Homeless count conducted in Greenbelt and other BCNA areas
- 2/16/23 Mailed letter re: call to action to City Officials and Department heads
- 2/16/23 Met with Council Member Qadri via MS TEAMS platform
- 2/17/23 Met with Council Member Qadri and Sara Barge at Greenbelt for a tour of encampments.
- 2/21/2023 Presented HWG Chart of work to General Association
- 3/6/2023 Steering Committee – Set first meeting of HWG and identified members to serve on WG.
- 3/10/2023 Met with Parks and Recreation Director; Austin Public Health Office of Homeless Strategy Director and staff; Lt. Davis APD, CM Qadri, Senior Policy Advisor, via MS teams.
- 3/21/2023 Held first HWG meeting. (3/21 Meeting Minutes)
- 3/22/2023 Met with Mark Littlefield, special assistant to the Mayor.
- 3/23/2023 Jody Zemel and Sarah Veyland present citizen concerns to Austin’s Mayor and City Council
- 3/24/2023 Meeting scheduled with Homeless Strategy Division, PARD, Austin Police Department staff.
- 4/5/2023 Meeting for residents to express concerns.
- 8/2023 – HEAL initiative started rehousing homeless occupants and clearing the greenbelt of all camps. followed by a months-long clean-up effort coordinated by PARD. For details, Read the update letter from the working group co-chairs.
- August – October 2023 – Green belt has been cleared and cleanup work has been ongoing.
CITY-WIDE INFORMATION & RESOURCES:
HOMELESS STRATEGY DIVISION COMMUNITY UPDATES from Austin Public Health (Feb 17th, 2023)