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The Long Beach Homeless Veterans Initiative Saves Los Angeles County $1.6 Million

The Long Beach Homeless Veterans Initiative (LBHVI) is a three year program under contract with the Los Angeles County’s Homeless Prevention Initiative, which seeks to house homeless veterans in Long Beach while connecting them to needed services.  LBHVI focuses on helping veterans access public benefits such as Social Security Income (SSI), services for mental and physical health, housing resources and employment opportunities.  The initiative began in 2008 and was recently evaluated by the Research and Evaluation Services (RES) unit within Los Angeles County’s Chief Executive Office.

RES evaluation found that investment in the Long Beach Homeless Veterans Initiative has been a successful cost avoidance strategy for the County. Client engagement with the initiative was associated with significant cost avoidance for the County departments of Health Services (DHS), Public Health (DPH), Public Social Services (DPSS), and the Sheriff’s.  Due to increased service provision, the costs of the County’s Department of Mental Health (DMH) increased slightly. However, when coupled with savings from DHS, DPH, DPSS, and the Sheriff’s Department, the LBHVI resulted in a net total service cost avoidance of $1.6 million for the year after client engagement.

Other Key Findings Include:

  • Within 1 year, the DHS went from spending $257,000 per year to meet LBHVI clients’ needs to only $60,000 – a 77% reduction.
  • Incarceration costs showed the largest decrease, from $1.5 million to $290,000 after the first year of client engagement – a decline of 81%.
  • LBHVI clients on General Relief (GR) are expected to leave GR six months earlier resulting in total GR cost avoidance of $154,800.

*See image above for a visual comparison of service costs before and after LBHVI implementation.

For the full report click HERE

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