The Portland Street Response Community Outreach workgroup spearheaded this survey: Yesenia Carillo with the Office of Commissioner Amanda Fritz; Ebony Clarke, Multnomah County Director of Mental Health and Addiction Services Division; Angela Donley with the Office of Commissioner Jayapal; Thea Kindschuh with Mapping Action Collective; Matt McNally with the Office of Commissioner Hardesty; Ibrahim Mubarak, Executive Director of Right 2 Survive; Greg Townley with Portland State University Homelessness Research & Action Collaborative; Winta Johannes with the Office of Commissioner Eudaly; Kaia Sand, Street Roots; and Neal Sand, Yellow Brick Road. This work was done in collaboration with Mapping Action Collective, Portland State University Homelessness Research & Action Collaborative, Right 2 Survive, Sisters of the Road, Street Books, Street Roots and Yellow Brick Road. Thank you to the surveyors: Holly Brott, Celeste Blair, Matthew Brown, Cornell Clemons, Rick Davis, Tina Drake, Cory Elia, Curtis “Zen” Faith, Mykel Gardner, Daniel Hoffman, Alissa Keny-Guyer, Jeremy, Brian Lane, Charles LaPraim Jr, Emily Leickly, Dave Lonon, Randal Lutz, George McCarthy, Brandon Morgove, Mode, Vince Masiello, Sarah Mercurio, Wayne Moore, David Northcut, Wendy Nuttelman, Marcie Possinger, Don Peterson, Marta Petteni, Thomas Robertson, Mark Rodriguez, Neal Sand, Sean Sheffield, Donald Short Jr., Katricia Stewart, Laeth Tabba, Raven Thicket, Amy Turco, Chris Wagoner, Kathy Wai and Jeremy Young. Thank you to Sisters of the Road, JOIN, Central City Concern, and Yellow Brick Road day center for hosting listening sessions with the Office of Commissioner Hardesty; and to Outside In for gathering additional information. Thanks to Helen Hill, Kayla Jones, Nina Lee and DeVon Pouncey with Street Roots; Stefanie Knowlton and Marisa Zapata with the Portland State University Homelessness Research & Action Collaborative; Danielle Klock with Sisters of the Road; and Diana Rempe with Street Books. The Office of Community and Civic Life supported this research.
Homelessness -- Social aspects -- Case Studies, Homelessness -- Oregon -- Portland, Homelessness -- Surveys, Social justice, Racial justice, Equity
Many advocates, local officials, and people experiencing homelessness agree that Portland needs a better way to respond to low-priority calls for service involving those experiencing homelessness and behavioral health crises. This report examines efforts to address homelessness in Portland through the development of a plan to dispatch the Portland Street Response unit rather than police.
A team of community partners spread out across the city July 16 and 18 to interview people experiencing homelessness to help inform the design of the Portland Street Response pilot project (PSR). An additional team went out on Sept. 6.
Members of Street Roots, Sisters of the Road, Right 2 Survive, Street Books, the Portland State University Homelessness Research & Action Collaborative, the Map- ping Action Collective, Yellow Brick Road, Commissioner Jo Ann Hardesty’s office, and Alissa Keny-Guyer’s office interviewed 184 unhoused people. Participants formed teams of two to three, each lead by a Street Roots vendor or someone else who had experienced homelessness.
Teams engaged people experiencing homelessness in discussions about what the PSR pilot should look like, including who the first responders should be, how they should approach individuals in crisis, what types of services and resources they should bring with them, and what types of training they should have. Following the interviews, responses were analyzed and summarized into this report to provide guidance for this important initiative based directly on the needs and experiences of unhoused people.
Copyright Portland State University Homelessness Research & Action Collaborative 2019.
Townley, G., Sand, K. and Kindschuh, T. (2019). "Believe Our Stories & Listen: Portland Street Response Survey Report."