Michael Hopkins, CEO of Jewish Family Service of San Diego
On Monday, Feb. 25, 2019, the San Diego City Council confirmed its vote to repeal a more than 35-year-old law that made it illegal for people to live and sleep in their vehicles. While the City’s vote to repeal the law is a significant step, there is still much to be done to address San Diego’s homeless and housing crises. Without additional supportive services provided by the City and local nonprofit agencies, families and individuals living in their cars may continue to find permanent housing out of reach, perpetuating the cycle of poverty and homelessness in our community.
Jewish Family Service of San Diego (JFS) has contracts with the City of San Diego to run its Safe Parking Program on two lots: at the JFS Joan & Irwin Jacobs Campus and a city-owned lot on Aero Drive. Together, these two safe parking lots serve more than 200 individuals and families each night. The Safe Parking Program provides a safe, secure and legal place to sleep, along with housing specialists and case managers to help them move out of their vehicles and into permanent homes.
Through this work, we’ve seen how important supportive services like employment coaching, housing navigation and financial education are to helping people get back into homes and live more stable, secure lives.
For more information or to donate goods, services or funds, visit jfssd.org or call 858-637-3030.