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King County Executive
Dow Constantine


Bringing 500 people inside, creating 400 jobs – American Rescue Plan homelessness strategies

Summary

King County Executive Dow Constantine released his plan to offer shelter and housing to 500 people currently experiencing homelessness in downtown Seattle, Sodo, and nearby unincorporated areas. With $100 million from Pres. Biden’s American Rescue Plan, King County will also offer jobs and rental subsidies.

Story

Executive Constantine announced strategies to provide a safe living space and services to at least 500 people, along with a 24/7 Downtown Behavioral Health Response Team, hire at least 400 people, and other innovations.

“We have been grappling with the tremendous challenge of homelessness for a while now, but we finally have backup - a Congress and president who share our values, and are willing to invest in our people and communities,” said Executive Constantine. “These investments will not, by themselves, solve homelessness. But in concert with major local investments I've previously announced, they will make a big difference in people’s lives. King County – with help from the federal government – is willing to take on these challenges, to work together to restore communities and make sure every resident has the opportunity to thrive.”

The plan includes key strategies such as:

Bring more people inside with enhanced shelter or emergency housing with services: $47.7 million
Adds 357 new beds, including 50 prefabricated tiny housing units, and a new, 40-bed Behavioral Health Crisis Response Enhanced Shelter in Seattle. Maintains another 211 beds in sobering center and other facilities like leased hotel rooms.

Emergency overnight shelter for jail release & hospital discharge: $2 million
King County will re-open 35-person 4th & Jefferson Emergency Basic Shelter. Residents of the shelter have moved to other facilities and 4th & Jefferson has been closed for two years.  The restored shelter will observe public health guidance to guard against COVID transmission.

Support vehicle residents & provide emergency housing access: $5 million
Provide support service along with bathroom, shower, electricity and garbage to 50 RV’s. Sixty households currently residing in cars would be provided hotel vouchers.

Behavioral health supports for people experiencing homelessness: $7.7 million
Onsite 24/7 Downtown Seattle Behavioral Health Response Team, based in the King County campus in Pioneer Square, will respond to individuals in crisis. Additional funds will provide support and consultation to service providers.

Provide employment and rent subsidies for people living in shelters and emergency housing: $40 million
Create more space in existing shelters to serve more people by offering employment to 400 people and rental subsidies to people who are ready to move out of shelters toward increased independence. 


Quotes

We have been grappling with the tremendous challenge of homelessness for a while now, but we finally have backup - a Congress and president who share our values, and are willing to invest in our people and communities. These investments will not, by themselves, solve homelessness. But in concert with major local investments I've previously announced, they will make a big difference in people’s lives. King County – with help from the federal government – is willing to take on these challenges, to work together to restore communities and make sure every resident has the opportunity to thrive.

Dow Constantine, King County Executive

For more information, contact:

Alex Fryer, Executive Office, 206-477-7966


King County Executive
Dow Constantine
Dow constantine portrait

Read the Executive's biography