Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2022, $1,500,000)
The Crisis and Incident through Community-Led Engagement (CIRCLE) program will provide an alternative response to non-emergency 911 calls involving people experiencing homelessness (PEH) and a proactive on-the-ground presence. Crisis Response Teams (CRTs) will be available 24/7 to respond to PEH-related non-emergency calls from LAPD’s 911 system and the police non-emergency number. Proactive Embedded Response Teams (PERTs) will be deployed during the day, seven days a week, in areas of high need within the service community.
The program will operate in specific reporting districts within Venice and parts of Del Rey. The service area is located in the City of Los Angeles, the County of Los Angeles, and in Congressmember Ted Lieu’s District.
CRTs will respond to diverted non-emergency, non-violent 911 calls involving PEH 24/7. CRTs will be composed of three members, including a mental or behavioral health clinician and two crisis or homeless outreach practitioners. CIRCLE will not be armed or perform any law enforcement duties or responsibilities. CIRCLE is not intended or equipped to respond to violent situations or life-threatening emergencies. The following situations can be referred to CIRCLE: well-being check; indecent exposure; loitering or trespassing; noise complaint; syringe disposal; and other non-emergency requests for assistance for a PEH when there is no immediate danger, threat, or potential for violence.
PERTs will be deployed in high need areas within each pilot zone for eight hours a day, seven days a week. The purpose of PERTs is to prevent negative incidents, including criminal and non-criminal emergencies, before they happen and to strengthen the social environment and sense of safety in a particular area. Each team will have two members and may include crisis workers and homeless outreach workers, preferably with lived experience. Team duties include but are not limited to: outreach and engagement; service and housing referrals/connections; positive and pro-social norm interventions; and de-escalation interventions.
The CIRCLE Teams will also open and operate a 24/7 decompression center in the service area where they can provide services that include but are not limited to: allowing PEH to rest away from their encampment or reprieve from extreme weather or environmental conditions; de-escalating or de-compressing; or providing food and water.