700 Homeless Individuals Along Santa Ana Riverbed are Motel-Sheltered

(February 26, 2018) — As of Monday, February 26, 2018, the homeless individuals encampment on the Santa Ana Riverbed Trail has officially been cleared. This announcement comes after the County has ensured temporary shelter in the form of motel vouchers, shelter beds, and alternative housing placement for all individuals who were previously encamped along the riverbed. 

Approximately 700 individuals have been assisted with temporary shelter and access to services by the County and its partners. Those who had been encamped along the riverbed were also linked to recuperative care facilities, treatment centers, and wraparound services offered through the County such as mental health and medical care. The Orange Count Health Care Agency's staff worked tirelessly around the clock to ensure that every individual received comprehensive case management services and their placement was made based on their unique situations. 

"I'm extremely proud of the great work done by County staff who worked so diligently to make sure that the County delivers on its promise and homeless individuals at the riverbed were linked to comprehensive shelter options and services, and treated with respect and dignity," said Chairman Andrew Do, First District Supervisor. "This is a momentous occasion for the County of Orange and will undoubtedly shape how we address issues of homelessness moving forward." 

While the County has taken the lead in addressing homelessness along the Santa Ana Riverbed Trail, it has not been alone in this effort. Non-profit organizations, businesses, the faith-based community, cities, and many other stakeholders have contributed to this achievement and are crucial to continued success in the future. Collaboration and joint action are required to address an issue with the regional scope and impact such as homelessness. 

"Now that the riverbed has been cleared it is time for the County, along with city officials and all of our other partners, to continue our collaborative momentum forward on this issue," said Do. "What we've been able to accomplish when we apply our collective effort in a focused way has been phenomenal." 

The County of Orange is committed to addressing homelessness and will continue to make constant and consistent progress on the issue with the help of our community and non-profit partners.