Dear Outside In Friends and Family,
Oregon’s election day is approaching quickly! Tuesday, May 19th is the last day to drop off your ballot and have your voice be heard on many important and impactful local issues – including Measure 26-210. Now more than ever, our region needs services that support our community members who are experiencing homelessness and housing instability.
Measure 26-210 provides a pathway for long-term, sustainable social services while centering equity. We have an important opportunity to ensure that critical services are directed toward community groups who have been historically overlooked or discriminated against and create a thriving community that will benefit all its members.
There is no one cause of homelessness. However, we know that certain societal inequalities lead to a disproportionate representation of people of color, LGBTQIA+ individuals, and other marginalized groups among people experiencing homelessness. Metro Measure 26-210 centers equity right from the beginning. Funding for housing and supportive services “will be prioritized in a manner that provides equitable access to people of color and other historically marginalized communities.” Additionally, the oversight committee must include “persons…representing…underserved and/or marginalized communities,” and “culturally responsive and culturally specific services” are emphasized throughout the measure.
At Outside In, we believe that housing is a human right. And we know that supportive services such as behavioral health, substance use disorder treatment, and case management are critical to eliminating homelessness in our community. Measure 26-210 will direct funding to these important services, centering the needs of some of our most vulnerable community members.
We must stand together to show support for the type of community we want to live in: a community that takes care of each other. Measure 26-210 ensures that the people more likely to experience homelessness are receiving the services they need to stay housed and to successfully transition into safe and stable housing. By focusing on people who need supportive services the most, our entire community will come out of both the coronavirus and the housing crises a stronger, morally responsible, and more resilient community, together.
Thank you for your support of Measure 26-210 and for taking action to eliminate homelessness in our community.
Executive Director, Outside In
Board Member, HereTogether