FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
July 11, 2005
MAYOR MICHAEL R. BLOOMBERG SIGNS LEGISLATION TO TRACK DEATHS OF HOMELESS INDIVIDUALS
Remarks by Mayor Bloomberg at a Public Hearing on Local Laws
"The first bill before me is Introductory Number 127-B, sponsored by Council Members Quinn, DeBlasio, Reyna, Palma, Avella, Boyland, Brewer, Fidler, Gioia, Jackson, James, Martinez, Reed, Sanders, Gennaro, Liu, Clarke, Sears, Stewart, Weprin, Moskowitz, Seabrook, and Public Advocate, Betsy Gotbaum. This bill requires the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene to track and report the deaths of homeless persons in New York City.
"In June 2004, the Administration released a comprehensive plan for reducing homelessness by two-thirds by 2009. This plan contains over 60 initiatives to increase prevention services, the supply of rental assistance and the amount of supportive housing. These initiatives are designed to reduce the amount of time individuals and families remain homeless and to prevent them from becoming homeless in the first place. Meeting these goals requires us to strive to understand the problems homeless individuals face and to precisely target our resources.
"Introductory Number 127-B provides another mechanism for gathering information by requiring the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene to generate quarterly reports detailing the cause and location of death for individuals residing in City homeless shelters, or determined to be homeless following an investigation by the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner.
"Our hope is that the information generated by this report can be used to better focus our outreach and intervention strategies. I would like to thank the City Council, Commissioner Tom Frieden, Department of Homeless Services Commissioner Linda Gibbs, Chief Medical Examiner Charles Hirsch, and Human Resources Administration Commissioner Verna Eggleston for their hard work and leadership on this issue."
Edward Skyler / Jordan Barowitz (212) 788-2958
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