Douglas County Commission to hear update on homelessness strategic plan

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Douglas County commissioners on Wednesday will hear about city and county staff members’ efforts to engage the community around a draft strategic plan that aims to reach functional zero homelessness by 2028.

The draft plan emphasizes equity, inclusion, and correcting imbalances of power. Read more about the draft plan in this article from March.

Staff members held five listening sessions over April and May: one virtual, two in person and two that were for people with lived experience only.

Among top items staff members heard during the listening session were “Importance of centering (and compensating) those with lived experience in program design and strategic planning” and “Prioritize meeting basic health, dignity, SAFETY and well-being needs of unhoused community members (food, toilets, showering, hygiene, storage, food),” according to a presentation in the agenda.

“All community members, and especially those who joined the listening sessions this spring, are encouraged to watch one or both upcoming presentations,” according to a joint news release Tuesday from the city and county.

The Douglas County Commission’s discussion on the homelessness and housing strategic plan is set for a work session at 4 p.m. Wednesday, June 28 at the historic county courthouse, 1100 Massachusetts St. See the full meeting agenda at this link.

The commission hears public comment in person at the courthouse and virtually via Zoom during its regular meetings. Find the Zoom meeting link and instructions on this page. Meeting recordings are later uploaded to the county’s YouTube channel,

Lawrence city commissioners will also hear an update on the plan during their next meeting, set for 5:45 p.m. Tuesday, July 11.

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