Brilliant Corners has continued our advocacy efforts throughout the summer season. During the last quarter, we took action on several policy and advocacy initiatives and worked in collaboration with organizations and coalitions at the state and local level to advocate for housing and homelessness policy improvements and more. Below is a recap of the activities we engaged in this summer.
At the State Level
Assembly Bill 1568
In June and August, we submitted letters of support for Assembly Bill 1568. AB 1568 would codify an Independent Living Skills (ILS) rate adjustment, requiring the Department of Developmental Services to revise the ILS rate. ILS service providers are skilled in teaching people with Intellectual or Developmental Disabilities (I/DD) to live independently in a safe, supported, and person-centered environment. AB 1568 is significant to Brilliant Corners given our founding mission to reduce barriers to housing for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities, and our ongoing work to provide safe and appropriate housing options for people with I/DD in independent, community-based settings.
Assembly Bill 799
In July, we joined the National Alliance to End Homelessness (NAEH), to sign a letter of support for Assembly Bill 799. AB 799, also known as the Homeless Housing Assistance Prevention (HHAP) accountability bill, would ensure local jurisdictions invest their homelessness resources in proven solutions that quickly rehouse people and reduce homelessness numbers. Specifically, AB 799 would also allow local service providers to hire and retain the staff they need to ramp up homelessness prevention efforts and also advance racial equity in the contracting, hiring, data collection, and policymaking processes within homeless service system responses.
California Legislative Staff Education Institute
In July, our partners at Capitol Impact invited our Chief Operating Officer, Chris Contreras, and Chief Strategic Partnership Officer, Sabrina Gillan, to Sacramento for a learning event with the California Legislative Staff Education Institute, which is dedicated to improving public policy decision making through professional development for CA state legislative staff. Chris and Sabrina delivered a Flexible Housing Subsidy Pool presentation and discussed current legislative proposals that could impact housing access and scale solutions for homelessness.
At the Local Level
Report on Los Angeles County Adult Residential Facilities and Residential Care Facilities for the Elderly
In August, Brilliant Corners released a new report, Serving Our Vulnerable Populations: Los Angeles County Adult Residential Facilities and Residential Care Facilities for the Elderly, a first-of-its kind analysis of the landscape of ARFs and RCFEs and the most comprehensive study to date on the range of existing facilities in LA County, current vacancy rates, the percentage of residents who have experienced homelessness, and a deep dive into the unique needs of residents, as well as the needs of facility owners and operators. Authored by The Future Organization, a research-based consultancy with a focus on serving the needs of nonprofits and government, the report is the result of a year-long research study to pinpoint the availability of ARF/RCFEs in LA County, examine the challenges to ongoing operation for these sites, uplift opportunities for increasing placement rates for people who have experienced homelessness, and provide recommendations to stabilize and increase access to these vital housing resources. We are proud to share that the report was also featured in the LA Times.
Care First Community Investment (Formerly known as Measure J)
Brilliant Corners continues to support the recommendations for fully funding Measure J and the Care First vision in Los Angeles. We are happy to share that in early August, an appellate court unanimously ruled that Measure J is constitutional, reversing a 2021 decision and creating the potential for millions of dollars to be invested in social services and alternatives to incarceration. You can learn more about the decision in this article in the LA Times. In the coming months, our team will support coalition efforts to ensure Los Angeles County’s supplemental budget for FY 24 reflects a Care First vision.
Fair Chance Housing Ordinance
We are continuing the efforts in our campaign to bring about the LA County Fair Chance Housing Ordinance, which would give equal access in the housing application process to people in LA County who have experienced incarceration. Brilliant Corners Director of External Affairs, Jose Osuna, continues to actively work with stakeholders at the local level to support the Fair Chance Housing Ordinance for the City of LA on a parallel track. If you would like to learn more or want to participate in the coalition or the campaign in any way, please reach out to our Director of External Affairs, Jose Osuna, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Provider Advocacy Policy Roundtable (PAPR)
We are proud to join local LA-area peer nonprofit partners in the homeless services sector at the Provider Advocacy Policy Roundtable (PAPR) to collaborate on advocacy priorities that would lead to sector-wide system improvements. The working group is currently focused on strategies to increase funding for services and workforce investment, including intensive case management services (ICMS) – one of the key components of wrap-around supportive services that are provided to residents in supportive housing and individuals transitioning from interim housing or street homelessness – and an area that has long been underfunded.
We are thrilled to share that, after three years of time-intensive advocacy, our Breaking Barriers program has secured an ongoing funding commitment through AB 109, the Public Safety Realignment Act. This will allow Breaking Barriers, a groundbreaking program operated by Brilliant Corners that provides housing, tenancy support, case management, and employment services to justice-impacted adults and families in LA County who are experiencing homelessness, to restore its original participant capacity and serve up to 280 participants.