Community Homeless Improvement Project in Eureka discussed at public meetings
EUREKA- City, county and elected officials in Eureka, along with members of businesses and advocacy groups, formed a coalition last fall to address Eureka’s homelessness issues. On Tuesday, members of the Community Homeless Improvement Project updated the public on the group’s progress at the Board of Supervisors and Eureka City Council meetings.
The mission of CHIP is to reduce the effect homeless people have on the City of Eureka. By bringing multiple resources and services together, CHIP members aim to control unlawful and destructive behavior, get people into housing that want to be there, and let the community know which services they should donate to, as opposed to giving money to panhandlers. The Police Chief of the Eureka Police Department, Andrew Mills, talked about why a group effort, and not just law enforcement, is needed to address these issues.
"According to our research, and talking to homeless and speaking with homeless advocates and experts, about 80 to 85 percent of the population locally is seriously mentally ill. So that doesn't lend itself for us to be the solution. That's why it's so important for Health and Human Services to give us the help that we need to do a correct assessment on those folks that need mental health help," said Police Chief Mills.