The 2023 National Health Care for the Homeless Conference & Policy Symposium was held from May 15-18 in Baltimore!
Hosted annually by the National Health Care for the Homeless Council, this year's theme was "Toward Justice: Leading with Lived Experience." With 1,000 attendees working at the intersection of health care and housing, here's a recap of the conference.
You can find the full agenda here. For a quick summary of the topics they covered:
Federal Panel - Senior Director of Policy (National) Barbara DiPietro
Syringe Service Program in Mobile Clinics - Senior Director of Medicine at Community Sites Tyler Gray, West Baltimore Medical Provider Katharine Billipp, Outreach Services Manager John Lane, CMA Pam Ford-Manifold
HRSA Panel - Senior Director of Policy (National) Barbara DiPietro
Confronting Collective and Cumuliative Grief: Self-case as an Institutional Responsibility - Behavioral Health Therapist Deirdre Hoey, Pediatric & Family Case Manager Lauren Ojeda and Behavioral Health Therapist Veronica Johnson
Elevating Medical Respite to a Statewide Medicaid Benefit: Successful State Approaches: Senior Director of Policy (National) Barbara DiPietro
Returning to Intention: Sharing yoga practices justly with people experiencing homelessness - Board Member Albert Miller and Behavioral Health Therapist Deirdre Hoey
Preventing Suicide: Resources for Assessment, Intervention and Coping with Loss - Chief Behavioral Health Officer Lawanda Williams
Harm Reduction and HCH: Supporting People Who Use Drugs Across the Spectrum of Care - Harm Reduction Manager Molly Greenberg
"...We need HCH programs at the table in communities across the country that are struggling to address the crisis of unsheltered homelessness and encampments. I believe that communities can and should address encampments head-on and that the most humane and effective way to do it is through public health, not law enforcement; through housing, not handcuffs." —USICH Executive Director Jeff Olivet
Ellen Dailey was instrumental in starting the Consumer Advisory Board in Boston and the National Consumer Advisory Board (NCAB). The movement to involve consumers in the provision of services owes her much gratitude.
Ellen fought tirelessly for the rights of other people experiencing homelessness - and each year an award in her name is given to a fellow advocate.
Many of you know this year's award recipient well: Board Member Albert Miller (also featured in our documentary We are a Mirror of Love)! Congratulate him when you see him next.
Homeless service providers from around the country toured Fallsway and Sojourner Place at Oliver.
Our Sojourner tour guides were Chief Quality Officer Keiren Havens, Director of Client Access Muhammed Mamman, and Sr. Director of Advancement Kevin Feldt.
More than 200+ conference attendees got to come on board the Mobile Clinic with Outreach Services Manager John Lane and Community Health Worker Justine Wright.
Meanwhile, guests got tours of 421 Fallsway by CEO Kevin Lindamood, Client Access Project Coordinator Alkema Jackson, and Agency Event Coordinator Ranak Patel.
For everyone who missed out, you can take the virtual tour!
National Consumer Advisory Board Rally
With the help of Sr Client Engagement Manager Malcolm Williams, the National Consumer Advisory Board organized a rally at McKeldin Square on Wed. May 17. Each year, the conference features a rally to call attention to health care and housing as human rights.
"We have to stop treating homeless people as the problem, and instead treat homelessness as the problem. We have more power than we know."—NHCHC CEO Bobby Watts
"Life experience cuts us. It wounds us. We’re bent. We’re broken. I’ve had two surgeries in the last year. I’m a survivor of a rare chronic disease.… I’ve lived in abandoned buildings.... I’m that person struggling with substance use and abuse. I’m that person. I’ve been a single mom. I’ve been on Medicaid. I’ve received public assistance.... It’s not that I’m proud of those things but I recognize that those things have cut me in a particular way. That I am now a key for a specific lock for this moment. … You are someone’s key." —Denise Octavia Smith, founding director of of the National Association of Community Health Workers
This year, Therapist Case Manager Tammy Montague (LCSW-C) testified to Maryland State Assembly, calling for an end to biased social work exams that prevent Black and brown people from getting their licenses. Read how Black social workers like Tammy are driving out disparity in the field.
The annual National Health Care for the Homeless Conference & Policy Symposium was May 15-18 in Baltimore! More than 1,000 attendees came from across the nation; here's a recap of all the ways we gathered and called for change.
Introducing our 2022 staff Racial Equity and Inclusion (REI) Committee comprised of nine staff members who will advise the Executive Team on racial equity vision, strategy and transformation within our agency in the months to come.