HOMECONTACTCITY HALLCITY EMPLOYMENTONLINE SERVICEBUSINESSRESIDENTSVISITORS
City of KnoxvilleContact Us
I Want To...
Download Permits & Forms »
Find City Court Info »
Find Next Brush Pickup Date »
Report Traffic Issue »
Retrieve Impounded Vehicle »
News
Local Hazard Mitigation Plan Gets Annual Update »
KAT Proposes Demonstration Route for Outdoor Activities »
Multiple Drug and Felony Arrests Earns Unit Special Recognition »
Work Begins on Cross Park Drive Improvements »
New Tax Revenue to Allow Completion of Several Projects »
Downtown Circulation and Mobility Plan »
Mobile Food Vendor Program »
Civil Rights Act Anniversary »
Cumberland Connection Blog »
Engineering Department Project Blog »
Like the City on Facebook® »
Follow the City on Twitter »
View Press Releases »
Click Here for Printer Friendly Version
NEWS RELEASES
City of Knoxville, Tennessee
Madeline Rogero, Mayor
FOLLOW THE MAYOR
www.facebook.com/mayorrogero
www.twitter.com/mayorrogero

For Immediate Release
Plan to end chronic homelessness in Knoxville-Knox County detailed
Homelessness Task Force
2004 Knox Homeless Study [PDF]
KnoxHomeless.org
Interagency Council on Homelessness
U.S. Dept. of HUD Homeless Info
U.S. Dept. of HUD Homeless in TN Info
Ten Year Plan to End Chronic Homelessness [PDF]
10/06/04 - Mayors announce homelessness initiative
October 7, 2005 - Knoxville Mayor Bill Haslam and Knox County Mayor Mike Ragsdale announced today that they will appoint a director to bring together the federal, state and local resources necessary to implement a plan to end chronic homelessness over the next 10 years.

The Knoxville and Knox County Ten-Year Plan to End Chronic Homelessness emphasizes coordination among agencies serving homeless individuals, and stresses accountability for results.

An advisory board comprised of public and private service providers, non-profit organizations and donors will also be appointed to aid the director.

"Ending chronic homelessness in our community requires participation of all stakeholders in addressing this problem in a different way than we have before," Mayor Ragsdale said. "Resources are not unlimited, and it's imperative that we work together to ensure no duplication exists among services delivered by agencies."

Mayor Bill Haslam and Mayor Mike RagsdaleAdded Mayor Haslam, "We appointed this task force a year ago with the understanding that the 'status quo' was not going to solve this growing dilemma. The next step is for public and private service providers, and the faith-based community, to take ownership of this plan and move forward together to end chronic homelessness, and ultimately prevent homelessness in Knoxville and Knox County."

The task force full implementation of a Homeless Management Information System (HMIS), an Internet-based database that shelters, housing providers, service agencies and others who work with the homeless can share client information and better coordinate case management. Roll-out of this system has already begun over the past year.

Chronically homeless is defined as individuals who have been homeless for more than a year or who have been repeatedly homeless.

While these individuals account for just 10 percent of the homeless population, they utilize 50 percent of the resources, including emergency medical services, psychiatric treatment, detox facilities, shelters, law enforcement and correctional facilities.

This relatively small population puts inordinate stress on the social service system, leaving little resources to serve those who are incidentally homeless or to prevent homelessness.

Dr. Roger Nooe, of the University of Tennessee College of Social Work, served as the task force's chairman, and Mike Dunthorn, of the City of Knoxville, as the vice chair.

"This plan offers a framework for ending the institution of homelessness," Dr. Nooe stated. "By increasing the availability of permanent housing, providing coordinated case management and linking homeless persons to community resources, Knoxville and Knox County can reduce chronic homelessness and perhaps more importantly, prevent others from becoming chronically homeless."

Other strategies recommended by the task force:

  • Move people into housing first - and then address issues impacting the individual such as mental illness, chemical addictions, education and employment. This approach is almost a reverse from what is occurring currently - permanent housing is reserved as an incentive for the homeless individuals. The task force notes that without the stability of housing, other services do not yield good results.

  • Stop discharging people into homelessness. Work with the foster care system, mental health hospitals, emergency rooms, and jails to develop a procedure where individuals are linked to community services before they are released.

  • Increase coordination and effectiveness of service. Individuals should enter the provider system through a single point, have one case manager, and agencies should specialize in their functions.

  • Increase economic opportunities. Assess individuals income, education and employability when they enter the system, and determine needs of further training. Develop basic skills training programs and provide potential employers with certificate attesting to their skills.

    Members of the task force were: Major Dewey Alderson, The Salvation Army; Susan Brown, formerly of Rural/Metro Corp.; Susan Fowlkes, Community Health Services; John Gill, Knox County District Attorney's Office; Michele Hummel, Central Business Improvement District; Barbara Kelly, Knoxville-Knox County Community Action Committee; Alvin Nance, Knoxville's Community Development Corp.; Chief Sterling Owen IV and Lt. David Rausch, Knoxville Police Department; Mintha Roach, Knoxville Utilities Board; Burt Rosen, Knox Area Rescue Ministries; Frank Rothermel, Denark Construction; Elisabeth Rukeyser, mental health advocate; J. Laurens Tullock, Cornerstone Foundation; and Ginny Weatherstone, East Tennessee Coalition for the Homeless.

    Homelessness in Knoxville and Knox County By the Numbers
    :

  • 900 people sleep in emergency shelters, on the street, in cards, in transitional housing, or double up with friends on any given night

  • 1,900 people will experience homelessness over the course of the month (an increase from 800 persons in 1986)

  • Between, 8,000 and 9,000 will experience homelessness at one time over the course of a year

  • 10 percent of those who are homeless are chronically homeless - people who have been homeless for over one year or who has been repeatedly homeless. This segment of the population consumers more than 50 percent of the resources including emergency medical services, psychiatric treatment, detox facilities, shelters, law enforcement and jails

  • Thirteen percent of this chronic group had children with them

  • 3,800 to 5,000 people a year are arrested for public intoxication. Fewer than 80 individuals - each arrested six more times - account for one-fourth of those arrests. Seven individuals have 100 or more arrested during the past five years.

  • One-fourth of youth leaving foster care at age 18 will be homeless within a year.

  • For Immediate Release
    PRESS RELEASE INDEX
    Add to Favorites
    Adobe PDF Reader
    Email Page
    Font Smaller
    Font Normal
    Font Larger
    Get Directions
    Make Home Page
    Print Page
    RSS/XML Feed
    Search A to Z List
    Site Map
    Traduzca en Español
    Translate to More Languages
    Dial 3-1-1 For City Services
    311. One Number. One Call.
    Click Here for Brush Pickup Schedule
    City Departments
    Communications »
    Community Development »
    Community Relations »
    Engineering »
    Finance Dept. »
    Fire Dept. »
    Law Dept. »
    Mayor's Office »
    Parks & Recreation »
    Plans Review/Inspections »
    Police Dept. »
    Policy & Redevelopment »
    Public Service »
    Special Events »
    Sustainability »
    List of All Depts. »
    Phone List »
    Promotions