David Lecture: Confronting Youth & Family Homelessness 4.9.18 - DCRP Panel Discussion


Coco Auerswald - MD, MS, Community Health Sciences, UC Berkeley

Rob Gitin - Co-Founder and Executive Director, At the Crossroads

Tomiquia Moss - Executive Director and CEO, Hamilton Families

Panel moderated by Carolina Reid, Assistant Professor, Department of City and Regional Planning

The Bay Area has become the epicenter of the homelessness crisis, with the number of people living on the street or in make-shift shelters increasing significantly. Of particular concern is the rise in youth and family homelessness. Although statistics are hard to come by, an estimated 25 percent of the homeless in San Francisco are unaccompanied youth or families, and in Santa Clara county it is estimated to be as much as 50 percent. For these youth, experiencing homelessness can have devastating and long-term consequences, including poor health, exposure to violence and abuse, social, emotional, and behavioral problems, and difficulties attending and learning in school.

This panel brings together three leading thinkers in the Bay Area to discuss the drivers of youth and family homelessness, the unique challenges and characteristics that need to be addressed to help homeless youth and families, and the policies that are needed to confront this crisis. Coco Auerswald is a Professor of Community Health Sciences at UC Berkeley whose research focuses on the effects of poverty and of social/cultural context on the health of homeless and other disadvantaged youth. Rob Gitin is the co-founder and Executive Director of At The Crossroads, which works with homeless youth and young adults who are not accessing traditional services. Tomiquia Moss is the Executive Director and CEO of Hamilton Families, a Bay Area nonprofit committed to ending family homelessness in the Bay Area.