BSO’S HOMELESS INITIATIVE LAUDED
Date: August 29, 2014 PIO Number: 14-8-23
The International Association of Chiefs of Police has selected the Broward Sheriff’s Office as the winner of its IACP Civil Rights Award for 2014 for its innovative Homeless Outreach Initiative.
Agency representatives will proudly accept the award for the single agency category, at a reception on October 26 during the organization’s 121st annual conference at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Orlando.
“I’m extremely honored by this recognition. The Homeless Outreach Initiative has been one of my main priorities since taking office in 2013,” Sheriff Scott Israel said. “After interacting with this population in my many years in law enforcement, I learned that anyone in the middle of a personal perfect storm can end up on the streets. Sometimes all they need is someone willing and able to help, and I wanted to develop a program where we could be that “someone” for the homeless people of Broward County.”
Under Sheriff Israel’s leadership, the agency adopted a proactive approach to dealing with homelessness. Deputies in all 16 BSO districts received specialized training to be aware of the causes of homelessness as well as learning of available social services in our community. Our deputies conduct a needs assessment of individuals who are homeless and are able to initially identify the specific social service needs that may be appropriate. Additionally, the deputies provide direct referrals and assistance to the homeless so they can access available resources that are provided through Broward County’s social services continuum of care.
BSO is proud that the program has earned international recognition in the law enforcement community and hopes it leads to a change of perception and treatment of the homeless population by law enforcement in the U.S. and abroad.
To view a short video overview about BSO’s Homeless Outreach Initiative visit https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_w0LFn1JDpU.
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