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Department of Health Services

Homelessness Services

Emergency Shelter Sites FAQ

View the March 9, 2023 press release announcing the selection of the emergency shelter site on the County Government Campus »

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Homeless encampments along Joe Rodota Trail and elsewhere in Sonoma County have become a persistent health and safety issue. The unmanaged encampments have created public hazards and impeded accessibility to public areas; left dangerous debris, including biohazards such as used needles; and pose a fire risk, particularly in areas with heavy brush. They often pose a health hazard for the occupants of these camps themselves.

The Sonoma County Board of Supervisors voted unanimously on Feb. 21, 2023, to declare a shelter crisis and authorized the creation of up to two emergency sites to shelter people experiencing homelessness. An emergency shelter site would provide a safe, managed place for homeless individuals to camp while supporting them with wrap-around services on their path to permanent housing. 

County staff has selected a parking lot at 2550 Ventura Ave. on the County Government Center campus as the location for an emergency shelter site where space for up to 90 tents will be provided for homeless individuals to live temporarily while transitioning into permanent housing. The county has not determined at this time whether a second emergency shelter site will be needed.

Six public webinars were held to provide additional information and answer public questions and concerns. A recording of all Six webinars is available on this page as well as on the County’s Facebook page and YouTube channel in English and Spanish. 

July 12, 2023 webinar recording

Public Webinar Recordings


Operation of emergency shelter sites

Wrap-Around Services

Alternative Sites