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Special Coverage: Homelessness in Sonoma County

Solutions to homelessness come with their own challenges

Methods to end homelessness or significantly reduce the problem come with financial and political hurdles. Here’s a look at some of the key strategies and their challenges.

A home for the holidays for Petaluma family

The Vega family, once homeless, found housing in Petaluma through a COTS program.

County seeks solution to growing Roseland homeless camp

The county says everyone living behind the Dollar Tree on Sebastopol Road needs to leave eventually to make room for the property’s long-planned redevelopment.

After fires, teen leader of Operation Blanket, family are left homeless

‘I can understand it a lot more — how it feels if somebody’s sad that they lost their home. Now I understand how they feel even more,’ says Ian Rich, who founded the organization in 2014 to provide blankets for local homeless.

Petaluma’s COTS sheltering fire victims

The Petaluma homeless service nonprofit took in 10 newly displaced people at its Mary Isaak Center.

Supervisors, Santa Rosa to discuss fire recovery, housing

In a rare joint meeting, Sonoma County and Santa Rosa officials will discuss the extreme shortage of housing options and a homeless rate more than three times the national average.

Petaluma officers patrol rough terrain with new vehicles

Homeless outreach officers use UTVs to access hard to reach areas of Petaluma.

Police: Knife-wielding homeless man arrested in downtown Petaluma

A Santa Rosa man was arrested Wednesday night on suspicion of brandishing a knife at a security guard after he was asked to leave a downtown Petaluma bar for being unruly.

Petaluma police remove homeless encampment

Petaluma Police on Thursday led a cleanup of a homeless encampment along the Petaluma River.

$500,000 grant will fund new program to address homelessness in Petaluma

Petaluma’s Committee on the Shelterless has received a $500,000 grant aimed at helping the organization provide quicker, better aid to clients.

Hope for Sonoma County’s homeless crime victims

Out of the District Attorney’s Office comes a program that provides services for victims of assault and other crimes.

Homeless man arrested after suspected Petaluma arson attempt

A homeless man was arrested Monday afternoon after Petaluma police officers allegedly caught him trying to set a redwood tree on fire in a homeless camp.

Mike Harris to lead public tour of COTS homeless shelter

A public tour of COTS’ (Committee on the Shelterless) Mary Isaak Center is scheduled for Thursday, August 3 from 5:30 to 6: 30.

Sonoma County’s safe-parking program scales down

Sonoma County’s safe-parking program, a widely-praised effort providing sanctioned locations where homeless people can sleep in their cars overnight, is shrinking starting today.

County seeks savings in boost of mental health care for homeless

The $17 million outlay, shared by Sonoma County and the federal government, is meant to address the outsize public cost of a small number of people with complex medical issues.

Petaluma police clean up homeless camps

Petaluma police Thursday hauled about 20 yards of garbage and waste from a series of homeless encampments.

Poll: No county funding for immigrant defense

Respondents to an online Argus-Courier poll said that they do not agree with the county spending $2 million to set up a legal defense fund for undocumented immigrants.H

Poll: Don’t cut funding for homeless services

Respondents to an online Argus-Courier poll said that Petaluma should not cut the level it funds the Committee on the Shelterless.

Funding cuts threaten Petaluma homeless services

The city’s proposed budget contains cuts for COTS, with a hearing to adopt the budget set for May 15.

SMART cleaning up tracks ahead of train service

The commuter rail agency is making an effort to remove homeless camps along the tracks in Petaluma.

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