Protecting the health of all San Diegans is our top priority. The City of San Diego is taking measures in consultation with, and at the direction of, County public health officials to help prevent the spread of the coronavirus and COVID-19 among our homeless population.
Early on, the City of San Diego, County of San Diego, Regional Task Force on the Homeless and San Diego Housing Commission came together to establish a Homeless Operations Branch under the City's Emergency Operations Center (EOC) to coordinate the needs, resources and logistics of homeless service operations. This team makes key decisions to protect this at-risk population.
Steps taken to protect people experiencing homeless include:
Operation Shelter to Home launched on April 1 by moving individuals already in shelters into the San Diego Convention Center to allow for proper physical distancing and prevent the spread of COVID-19. Because the effects of the pandemic were creating staffing challenges at the City’s various shelters, the program centralized staff in one place to ensure personnel could be efficient even with limited numbers. On April 10, outreach staff began to bring in unsheltered individuals living on San Diego streets into the convention center to provide a safe and sanitary environment amid the pandemic.
One of the core missions of Operation Shelter to Home is to find permanent housing for individuals. Case managers and housing navigators are focused on identifying the most appropriate exit strategy for shelter clients and working to end their cycle of homelessness, with the goal of ultimately reducing the number of individuals experiencing homelessness in San Diego.
Landlord Engagement and Assistance Program (LEAP)
Help San Diego's homeless through the San Diego Housing Commission's Landlord Engagement and Assistance Program (LEAP).
With rental homes that already exist in the market, landlords provide the best opportunity to quickly move individuals and families out of shelters and into a home of their own. Help San Diego's homeless by joining the San Diego Housing Commission's Landlord Engagement and Assistance Program (LEAP). The program provides landlords financial incentives while they may be experiencing economic challenges of their own due to COVID-19.