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Lt. Gov. Murray to Discuss Cape Homelessness Plan in Feb. 27 Visit

Press Release
February 23, 2009

HYANNIS, MA – Lt. Governor Timothy Murray will review a plan for a regional network on homelessness during a visit to the Cape February 27.

After a meeting with the Leadership Council’s executive committee, Murray will hold a press conference from 3 to 3:30 pm at the Assembly of Delegates room in the First District Courthouse at the Barnstable County complex.

The meeting between Murray and community leaders will focus on a $765,000 grant that was awarded to the Leadership Council to End Homelessness on Cape Cod and the Islands. The funding will be used for 18 months beginning in March and focus on interventions that will help reduce the number of people in shelter and prevent further homelessness among individuals and families.

Lt. Gov. Murray has been the governor’s point person on a statewide initiative to create regional networks across the state that will lead to a reduction in the problem of homelessness in the Commonwealth. He is working closely with Philip Mangano, Executive Director of the US Interagency on Housing and Homelessness, which administered the funding and spearheaded an effort that resulted in the Leadership Council’s development and implementation of a 10 year plan to end homelessness in 2004.

Housing Assistance Corporation (HAC) is the convening agency for the grant, but its disbursement is being decided by the Leadership Council’s executive committee and will go to supplement the efforts of various organizations on the Cape and Islands as well as provide direct one time help to individuals and families. The plan also calls for the hiring of an administrator to coordinate activities of the various service providers and an outreach worker for downtown Hyannis, and the direct use of funds to create additional affordable housing.

The Regional Network will launch a 24-triage phone line to provide families and individuals in crisis with immediate assistance and a Clinical Coordinating Council to ensure that people who are homeless or at risk of homelessness have intensive case management. "We will help current shelter clients move into permanent housing as quickly as possible and provide those at risk with other options, preferably in the community where they have support systems, so that they can avoid the shelter system," said Rick Presbrey, President/CEO of HAC.

Establishing a Regional Network to End Homelessness will enhance our efforts to effectively coordinate services to individuals and families in the region to prevent homelessness and rapidly re-house those who are homeless,” said Estella Fritzinger, CEO/Executive Director of the Community Action Committee of Cape Cod and Islands and co-chairman, with Presbrey, of the Leadership Council’s executive committee.