Needed to Address Homelessness
Dr. Robin Weinstein, Founding Pastor of Bethany Grace Community Church, is leading an effort to urge the Cumberland County Board of Chosen Freeholders to support the efforts of local residents and churches in addressing the problem of homelessness in the County by adopting a Homeless Trust Fund.
In 2009, New Jersey implemented legislation-permitting counties to impose a surcharge of $3 on each document recorded with a county, for deposit into a Homelessness Trust Fund.
As background, Cumberland County has implemented a successful Code Blue strategy.
“We must begin to address homelessness from a holistic and community-based approach that coordinates funding and social services in a manner that is effective and efficient.”
The Cumberland County Code Blue leadership sent a letter to Cumberland County Freeholders asking them to establish a Homeless Trust Fund.
“The Homelessness Trust Funds would be used to implement a ten-year plan to end homelessness. The Freeholder Board with the advice of a Trust Fund Task Force would disperse the funds to supplement a coordinated effort of all stakeholders in eliminating chronic homelessness in the county.”
By combining the funding mechanism of the County Homeless Trust Fund with the efficiency and effectiveness of a Housing First approach we have a chance to make significant progress in the fight against homelessness here in Cumberland County for the first time in decades.
Additionally, we have a working “unofficial” task force comprised of government agencies, nonprofits, and the hospital to explore establishing a pilot Housing First model in Cumberland County.
Click here to learn more about Dr. Weinstein and the community’s campaign to establish a trust fund. The link contains an online petition.