Meeting Information

Meeting Type
Friday Coalition Meeting
Friday, 2/1/2019
9:00 AM
9:00 AM
Upcoming Legislative Bills of Importance to our Clients, and update on the coming Soft Launch of new Family Day Center for families experiencing homelessness, and some more time for committees to plan 2019's work.
The Salvation Army Church (1110 S Puget Sound Ave, Tacoma, WA 98405)


  • James Pogue, Comprehensive Life Resources
  • This is the Pierce County Coalition to End Homelessness – excited about what we’ve done, and excited about what we are going to do
  • Theresa Power-Drutis - a big welcome to all the new folks


Family Day Center

  • Delmar Algee, Catholic Community Services, Family Housing Network -
  • Starting Monday – a new family day center at 5050 South Tacoma way. 
  • Funding from a few different sources
  • Piloting a new day center – families can come in and shower, get essential needs, do laundry, eat. 
  • Currently 9am-4pm (Mon, Tues, Thurs, Fri) and Noon-6pm on Wednesdays.
  • Will have access to on-demand coordinated Entry.
  • Kelly – can we refer to families there right away for coordinated entry?  Delmar – yes
  • Al – can other organizations be located there?  Delmar – that is in the works – we are working on getting some more space – taking over space currently used by a tenant. 
  • Question – just for families? Delmar – yes, those with a minor – one adult, one minor.
  • Kelly – if we wanted to have someone down there from goodwill, a couple hours a week, who would we contact?  Delmar – Alan Brown ( ), Delmar ( ), or Gerrit ( )
  • Maureen – do we plan to have more satellites around the County?  Is there a plan to do that?  Delmar – this is all new to us – we are revamping an existing overnight shelter into a new day shelter. (according to the book “Spy the Lie: Former CIA Officers Teach You How to Detect Deception”, that sort of a non-answer evasion may mean he’s trying conceal something. But they also say just one deception doesn’t a liar make.  But it makes you curious, doesn’t it?  Is Delmar up to something he doesn’t want us to know about?  -ed.)
  • Where is the funding from?  City of Tacoma, we are looking for County fund, and the Jeff Bezos Day One Foundation.
  • Question - Flyers?  Delmar – not yet – that is something we will be doing.  (that was a direct answer – so it is more probable he’s telling the truth. –ed)


Shelter Advocacy

  • Theresa Power-Drutis -
  • I met with the advocacy group this morning.  
  • Since the legislature is in session, I wanted a chance to get an idea about what is on their agenda. 
  • There are lots of bills that will benefit our clients
  • Activity -
  • As a group that is organized around shelter – I love the low income housing alliance.  Can we talk for a minute about the terms we use when advocating for shelter.  I like the term shelter instead of housing, since we include mobile homes and tent cities and tiny homes.  We want to talk about how everyone needs a safe place to sleep at night.  Some terminology.
    • Affordable housing – cost of housing is less than 30% of their income. 
    • Extremely low Income – below 30% of Area Median Income (AMI). 
    • Low income – between 30% and 50% of Area Median Income. 
    • (more income limit info and values at -ed)
    • Can we challenge HUD and their definitions? 
  • Al – when you go to testify before policy makers, it is important to be clear about who you represent.  I usually testify on my behalf.  If I’m authorized to speak on behalf of the Human Rights Commission, I identify as such.  Our group has no mechanism to allow someone to speak for it.  We must identify as someone who participates in the Coalition, not speaking for the Coalition.    James – we are not a 501c3, we have no formal charter, no formal mission, etc.   We are all sorts of different folks – left wing and right wing, from faith-based communities and traumatized by faith-based communities.  We are building one comprehensive group that addresses homelessness.  We also have City officials and County officials that have to have some separation from advocacy.  Our value is to be inclusive.  We don’t support or endorse or back as a group, as that will cause people to separate from the group. 
  • When advocating, always ask who is for a bill and also who is against it.  We work on a lot of things, and advocacy is important, but not all we do. 
  • Al – politicians care about how many people care about an issue.  We all care, even if we disagree on how to address it. 
  • Theresa – it is a choice for this group to not do lobbying. 
  • Patricia Menzies – I think that I’ve pushed really hard to call it “alternative shelter”.  The people I meet that are experiencing homelessness, even if they can get a tent someplace safe with community – they will feel better where they are safe from predators.  What we learned from Martin vs. Boise ( -ed.), is that having available shelter beds doesn’t mean anything if they aren’t accessible.  That word “accessible” has a bit of problem – folks often think mobility when they think accessibility.  Accessible in Martin vs. Boise – meant that this man couldn’t go in the shelter since when he was at the shelter he would walk around at night in the shelter, getting him banned because walking at night wasn’t acceptable or allowed in the shelter (Hopefully I got that right, Patricia. –ed)
  • Theresa – I appreciate the attention to this topic.  
  • Also, these Coalition’s subcommittees are not exclusive.  If you choose one group over another – that doesn’t mean you need to stay with that group until the end of time. 


Committee Group Plans

  • James – we have all these cool groups, and many folks want to be in multiple of them
  • I’m anti-structure, but think a bit of structure won’t hurt us. 
  • In February, we are going to try some new things
  • For instance, we could benefit from the re-entry folks (Community Partnerships for Transition Solutions – ed.).  They meet monthly at the same time.  What if we focused one meeting each month on reentry, would that group be interested in becoming part of the Coalition?
  • What if the youth coalition reformed as part of this Coalition – what if they regroups on the third Friday of each month, and we focused that monthly meeting on Youth?
  • Also, what highlighted topics would be the most important to focus on? 
  • I’ve you’ve been loving the way we’ve been doing this, should be more of the same. 
  • As we send out the agenda topics, you’ll see some themes.  However, we will still have flexibility when important things pop up. 
  • Is these subcommittees still ready to go in 2019? 
    • New Youth committee
    • New Re-Entry Committee – social justice/criminal justice focus
    • Resource Building committee? –or just have folks make sure to keep  us focused.
    • New city of Tacoma ordinance with tenant protections, as well as financial assistance for folks relocated due to changing land use.  Comprehensive Life Resources is working on the contract about how to provide that assistance
    • Evictions – Nate and Audrey and I used an existing grant to rehouse folks displaced at Tiki and Merkle.  Tough situations.  Want to continue to figure out how to do this – want to connect with any philanthropic organization that we can tap into.  This is largely preventative – get rehoused without having to touch the homeless system.  Nate –working with Tacoma Probono ( -ed) – many evictions are for just $50 and lead to homelessness.  We don’t’ have tools to prevent this.  James – many of the eviction partners aren’t regular attendees of this meeting – we are encouraging that work to continue -  
    • Advocacy – is active – you’ve seen what they have been doing.  One bill expands what faith-based groups can do. 
    • Daily Meaningful Activity group - James – noticed the trend of supporting folks exiting homelessness – they give up what they know while they were homeless – leave their friends and their pets – we put them in a house they can barely afford miles away from their support structures.  Many of our folks invite friends to their house and then get evited.  Thought it would be cool to build a positive social environment like gardening or bowling – creating positive daily meaningful activity.  Carrie – I missed quit a few meetings, Pamm Silver and Rich Berghammer helped carry it on.  We have ideas for 2019 – and what James mentioned -  created welcome packets for folks going into housing who needed to know what is going on.  I’m glad the resource guide is on-line now.  On issue we have is that the stability site – they have a survey – when  folks are leaving to list out what needs folks have.  We are looking at a mentoring program – but need some input from stability site staff.  Want to create a resources list, for instance, to get bus tickets to daily meaningful activities?  Scholarship passes to parks and rec?  support for folks moving into a new community – need a resource development piece.  Tanisha – with the Adams street shelter -  reach out to David Sullivan – he has connections to those tickets –
    • Innovative Shelter - $300k in county budget for a tiny house project – plan was that the county would dedicate the land, the $300k startup costs, and build a sustainable tiny home village – with grants or whatever.  They would have $300k as startup cost.  That $300k would get a site setup with power and sewer.  Hopefully they will go out to RFP at some point.  That was work through this subcommittee. 
      • Team leaders – Martha Sheppard – Shelter253 training – for folks who want to assist at shelters.  She got feedback from shelter folks about what is needed.  She is building shelter capacity by bringing more volunteers in.  We are good at identifying problems, noticing what is needed, and we can case manage the heck out of people, but there is no housing to send them to.  What James and Jo talked about, that is a place to really focus on getting changes so we can offer more varieties and affordability for folks who are truly low income.  Can we get some more housing under our program, or interested in managing some shared housing, or developing.  The last part is about tent cities – Patricia Menzies -  still frustrated we don’t have one.  I often hear about liability barriers, but many agencies pull it off in Seattle.  I need the group to help me overcome the barriers organizations see to hosting a tent city.  Part of the problem is that Tacoma doesn’t have ShareWheel ( -ed), a group that supports the host sites to make tent cities happen. 
    • Workforce Development – Kelly - did 4 Hire253’s in 2018.  Will  do 3 more in 2019 – because they are really big projects now.  Will do one in late March.  Planning meeting on Monday February 11th, from  3-5 at Goodwill.  Had issues with folks going to employment that weren’t quite work ready.  Got $160k to start a career readiness program – have flyers over there –starts on February 8th – take an initial test, do a resume, and hopefully they improve on their test afterwards, and then hand off that packet and all that to future employer.  We need livable wage jobs – doing an environmental training program – starts at $20/hour.  Had over 400 folks walk out of the hire253 with employment.  Doing a tax program now – over 1,200.  With 253Works job club, the goal is to have 10 partners as part of it – just have 3 partners right now.  Want to bring that hire253 job club to your organization.   

Good of the Order

  • Pierce County Resources – available at - want all the subcommittees to ensure their resources are updated on the database.  Getting all the substance use and medical treatment is out there and on the database. 
  • Go to to get on the listserv. 
  • Jo - Proposing to Pierce County to change allowed duration of temporary housing.  An Accessory Dwelling Unit (ADU) cost is around $100,000.  I’ve been working at Monroe State Prison – hoping that folks exiting will have housing – eventually in my ADU.

Coming Attractions

  • February 15th – Committee Work time (and maybe an Amerigroup presentation)
  • February 22nd – Racism and Homelessness theme
  • March 1st – Joint meeting with Partnership for Transition Solutions
  • March 8th – Census 2020 – how to help make sure everyone is counted
  • March 15th – Is Cassius’ suicide with the same dagger used to kill Julius Caesar Poetic justice for the sacrilege perpetrated on the Ides of March, or more crap Plutarch made up to sell books?  Ask our panel of experts, and decide for yourself. 
  • March 19th – Moms Mabley’s Birthday

Restaurant Review

I like soups.  I especially like to make them.  And I make them a lot.  I’ve never really liked leftovers (OK, I hate them), but I love soup leftovers.  A day in the fridge often makes them better.  I’m a pretty steady hand making soups, and a lot has to do with my wife’s Aunt Carolyn.  In college, my wife and I (well, she wasn’t my wife then) often went to visit her Aunt and Uncle on Bainbridge Island.  We lived in Seattle, and we’d escape the rush of school and work and life in the Emerald City with a relaxing ferry ride to a whole different pace of living.  We’d get picked up by Uncle Lee in their “island car” – it was the benevolent act of an unseen hand that kept that car running  - and head over to their home on Bill Point for an afternoon of chatting, walking, playing bridge, and usually making soup.  Carolyn is one of those people that can’t do just a bit of food – so she’d always make two huge pots of soup.  And she’d let me help.  I was a budding cook, and rather obsessively followed recipes.  Carolyn, not so much.  She might have a recipe book out, but she never really followed it – she just riffed on what made sense to her.  She could never understand how I could follow a recipe for soup – it made no sense to her.  Eventually she converted me to her way of thinking.  But I don’t always have time to make soup – most of the best soups take time – both chopping and simmering.  So, when I’m in the mood for soup (yes, eventually I was going to get to the restaurant review), I recommend Infinite Soups (445 Tacoma Ave, Tacoma, WA  - ).  They’ve been in business a long time.  They only do take out, but that is fine by me.  On a sunny day (winter, summer, spring or fall), I like to get a bowl, some bread (they sell bread too), and walk the 3 blocks over to Wright Park to enjoy the soup in the 27 acres of Green.  I suppose you could take the soup other places too, but why?  If I get to cold, I finish off my soup, and head into the conservatory to warm up among the orchids and the bird of paradise.  With a dozen soups available every day, you’re sure to find something you like.  I usually wander in a bit after the lunch crown, so the selection isn’t quite as robust as I’d like by that point.  But I always find something to my liking.  I’d recommend a favorite, but I don’t really have one.  They are all made from scratch.  Some are more inspired than others (mushroom and tortellini is amazing), but they are all well done.  Infinite Soups is also cash only – so be warned.   So get you a bowl of soup – it will offer some spiritual protection against whatever February has to throw at us.   


  • Matthew Jorgensen, City of Tacoma
  • Ed Gracian, Community Member (I don’t think I spelled that name correctly. –sorry –ed.)
  • Maureen Howard, Housing Advocate
  • Sarah Bellamy, Comprehensive Life Resources
  • Michael Jenkins
  • Ken Landry, Comprehensive Life Resources
  • William Stinson, Catholic Community Services
  • Delmar Algee, Catholic Community Services
  • Jane McKittrick, Catholic Community Services
  • Grayson Crane, Ingersoll Gender Center              
  • CC Mendoza, Metropolitan Development Council
  • Reggie
  • Bryan Green, Olive Crest – Safe Families for Children
  • Carolyn Read, St Leo’s Parish
  • Bruce Morris, Tacoma Transportation Commission and Chaplain with the Tacoma Fire Department
  • Carolyn Weisz, University of Puget Sound
  • Valentinya Germer, Comprehensive Life Resources
  • Alexis Eykel, Landlord Liaison Project (did you know the word liaison was originally used in recipes – a term for thickening sauces – from the Latin ligare, “to bind”.  In the 19th century, it meant “intimate relations” between lovers.  The 19th century also saw its use in a military sense, for cooperation between different group – I’m guessing that is meaning they are going for here.  But what is up with the “iai” dipthong? – liaison is really the only word that uses that three vowel combination.  Weird.  And the OED had no explanation for that. –ed.)
  • Carrie Ching, Molina Healthcare
  • Meridee Heimlich, Step by Step
  • Theresa Power-Drutis, New Connections
  • Brendan Baker, Veterans Administration
  • Immaculate Ferreria, Family Support Specialist
  • Brandon Chun, Metropolitan Development Council
  • Al Ratcliffe, Me
  • Cynthia Stewart, League of Women Voters
  • Larry Seaquist, league of Women Voters
  • Joseph Denton, UW
  • Jo Jensen, Community Activist! (her exclamation point, not mine. –ed)
  • Reggie – retured drug and alcohol
  • Eric Hasstedt, Safe Streets
  • Kim Meyers, Worksource Pierce
  • RoxAnne Simon, Safe Streets
  • Heather Fahsholtz, Comprehensive Life Resources
  • Maretha Baltimore, Salvation Army Puyallup
  • Sheri Jensen, Valeo Vocation
  • Nathan Blackmer, Comprehensive Life Resources
  • Rainey Carlin, Comprehensive Life Resources
  • Greta Brackman, Comprehensive Life Resources
  • Audrey Oliver, Comprehensive Life Resources
  • Andrea Sanz, Tacoma Rescue Mission
  • Justin Tillis, Tacoma Rescue Mission
  • Richard Berghammer, Fellowship Bible Church
  • Karleen Essary, Employment Pipeline
  • Erica Linggi, Multicare
  • Sandra Sych, Pierce County AIDs Foundation
  • Tanisha Dixon, Tacoma Rescue Mission
  • Patricia Menzies, Tent City Tacoma
  • Stephanie Adonai counseling
  • Glen Kelly, Multicare
  • Marylyn Durant, Comprehensive Life Resources
  • Kelly Blucher, Goodwill
  • Brandon Ault, Catholic Community Services
  • Jeannette Twitty, House of Matthew
  • Stephanie Prudhomme, Adonai Counseling
  • Sheila Miraflor, Molina Healthcare