Ending Child Homelessness in Mississippi
Establish a Mississippi Interagency Council on Homelessness
Senate Bill 2609 sponsored by Senator Hillman Frazier
House Bill 1236 sponsored by Representative Stephen Holland
More than 12,100 children are homeless in Mississippi each year. The Mississippi Campaign to End Child Homelessness recommends establishing a statewide Interagency Council on Homelessness to increase coordination and collaboration among state leaders and agencies, social service providers, community leaders, and families to ensure a sustained, coordinated response as a step towards preventing and ending child and family homelessness.
A Mississippi Interagency Council on Homelessness:
- Serves as the single, statewide homeless planning and policy development resource.
- Develops a statewide Ten-Year Plan to End Homelessness in Mississippi that includes a focus on the needs of homeless children, youth, families, individuals, and veterans.
- Meets regularly to implement the Plan, updates it annually, and provides information to the Mississippi Legislature and the public about progress in meeting goals.
- Establishes measurable objectives and statewide strategies to achieve its goals.
- Ensures accountability and results in implementing its strategies.
- Recommends policy, regulatory, and resource changes needed to accomplish its goals.
- Disseminates best practices for serving homeless families, youth, children, individuals, and veterans.
- Includes representatives from the Governor’s office; all relevant state government agencies; state legislators; federal, county and community officials; Continuum of Care representatives; homeless education liaisons; homeless shelter and service providers; representatives of domestic violence, child, and youth focused organizations; and parents, youth, individuals, and veterans who have experienced homelessness from all regions.
- Is spearheaded by a state leader or agency and is fully staffed to work effectively.
States with existing Interagency Councils on Homelessness find the following benefits:
- Promotion of fiscal responsibility and enhanced efficiency.
- Greater buy-in into the statewide plan and action steps by stakeholders.
- Members are champions of the plan, strategy, and resources needed.
- Enhanced coordination with federal and local efforts.
- Credible documentation of research-driven, measurable outcomes.
For more information about child and family homelessness, contact the
Mississippi Campaign to End Child Homelessness Coordinator Tuwanna Williams at
Tuwanna.Williams@familyhomelessness.org or call (601) 573-7959.