- Special Projects
A longtime homeless community has spent years fending off “sweeps” by the state. Now it’s planning a move to a permanent home.
Three dozen participants in Honolulu’s fledgling Law Enforcement Assisted Diversion Program reduced their emergency room visits, interactions with police and nights spent unsheltered.
The mayor is hoping state and federal agencies will help fund the effort to help homeless people, whether they want it or not.
Each of the nine council districts will receive an equal share of the money to fund projects in their own communities.
The project is part of a larger statewide initiative to expand the state health care system to better support people struggling with mental illness, drug addiction or homelessness.
Advocates say the measures would be a huge victory for the state’s mental health and homelessness systems.
A recent federal court ruling has some cities pulling back their bans on homeless people camping in public places.
A well-established homeless camp on the Leeward Coast easily qualifies for a share of the money set aside by the Legislature for safe zones.
But low-level offenders, who were supposed to get services instead of jail time, still aren’t eligible for the new program.