The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors approved a motion by Supervisors Kathryn Barger and Mark Ridley-Thomas on Tuesday that provides funding and additional mental health services for veterans.
The motion calls for the Department of Mental Health to fund and implement a countywide Veteran Peer Access Network.
“Our county community members understand that our service members and veterans face significant challenges when they return home,” said Barger, who represents the county’s Fifth District including the Santa Clarita Valley, in a news release.
“We must help our veterans attain the housing and services they have rightfully earned,” she said. “Navigating the Department of Veterans Affairs, Cal Vet, or community-based organizations should not hinder them from receiving help.”
The approved motion instructs the director of the Department of Mental Health to hire 40 full-time-equivalent staff to provide direct support and services to veterans and their families. It also calls for adding 12 new staff members to provide clinical and administrative support for the Veterans Peer Access Network.
The total estimated annual cost of the action is $6,468,200 for salaries, services and supplies, according to the agenda item for Tuesday’s Board of Supervisors meeting.
Authorize the Director of DMH to execute an agreement with Southern California Grant Makers, or SCG,
to create a public-private partnership focused on the implementation of services to veterans using a peer-to-peer model.
The total term of the agreement between the county and SCG will be for three fiscal years. The total estimated cost of the agreement is $13,779,645 ($4,696,945 for Year 1, $4,541,350 for Year 2, and $4,541,350 for Year 3).
No more than 15% of the total estimated cost of the agreement will be provided to SCG for services provided under this agreement.
Fostering public-private partnerships with a focus on veterans can drive innovation. This ensures accountability to inform conveners and funders where to direct ongoing funding.
Through this cross-sector collaboration and the development of Veteran Service Teams throughout our communities, LA County can provide additional resources to combat homelessness and suicide so veterans don’t fall through the cracks.