Bridge Shelter Opens for Seniors Experiencing Homelessness

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San Diego elected officials Tuesday helped open the Seniors Landing Bridge Shelter, a 33-room non-congregate facility at a leased hotel that will house seniors experiencing homelessness.

"This shelter is the latest step in our comprehensive strategy to address homelessness in San Diego, with solutions specifically tailored to the needs of seniors, who we know are falling into homelessness at higher rates right now," Mayor Todd Gloria said. "My administration is working every day to bring more shelters online to get more people experiencing homelessness off the street. This Seniors Landing Bridge Shelter is the latest example of that, with more to come."

The city has increased available beds for those experiencing homelessness by more than 600, according to Gloria's office. The Seniors Landing Bridge Shelter will be operated by Serving Seniors under a contract with the city's Homelessness Strategies and Solutions Department. It will prioritize residents 55 and older who have been matched with housing resources, such as rapid-rehousing assistance, permanent supportive housing or a housing voucher.

San Diego is leasing the hotel through June 2023, with two one-year renewal options.

"Seniors are the fastest-growing population of people becoming homeless in San Diego," City Council President Sean Elo-Rivera said. "This is an unacceptable tragedy that requires an urgent response.

"The privacy and dignity afforded by non-congregate shelters are a proven way of addressing homelessness amongst seniors and putting our elders on a path to permanent housing," he said.

According to Serving Seniors, residents of the new shelter will have access to health resources, including mental and behavioral health services; case management and housing navigation services; daily meals; showers, restrooms and laundry services; storage for belongings; hygiene products, basic first aid supplies and cleaning supplies; telephone access and mail services; and counseling services.

The opening of the shelter comes on the heels of San Diego being named a Prohousing City by the state, which gives San Diego an advantage when it comes to state grant funding for housing.

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