The homeless crisis is nothing new, but the way Sacramento approaching it is with a new team. It’s part of the city’s first responder triad.
Previously, when you called for help you would get the police or fire department; Now, there is a third option. The city’s Department of Community Response (DCR) was formed with the goal to de-escalate and provide support. In a team of two, Sacramento’s new DCR Thursday checked out a homeless encampment that has been generating a number of calls and complaints.
“It’s about looking to see what folks need, what their needs are and then taking the time to listen to their story,” explained Nathan Cox, a neighborhood resource coordinator.
Those stories could include chapters of drug and alcohol abuse, mental health concerns, a need for resources and support—all of which the response team addresses, and in many cases, eliminating the need for police to respond.