Seattle City Councilmember Praises Navigation Team Minutes Before He Votes To Eliminate Them
September 29, 2020
In an email to his constituents last week, Seattle City Councilmember Dan Strauss wanted to “address the homelessness in district 6.” Strauss said that action was needed to get homeless people out of parks, libraries, and bus stops and into adequate shelter. One of the best tools for this, Strauss wrote, was the Navigation Team.
I have made the request to Mayor Durkan’s office to remove homeless encampments at the Ballard Commons, the Leary Triangle, and other locations – without using sweeps. My request is to use the Navigation Team as designed, to navigate people into shelter, transitional housing, and adequate shelter. We know the Navigation Team is successful in this regard when they have the housing and adequate shelter beds available to navigate people. While I voted to keep the Navigation Team, we also know that the programs listed below will be successful even without the Navigation Team.
Strauss emphasized his vote to keep the Navigation Team and called them a successful program. Which makes it odd that Strauss voted to eliminate that same Navigation Team in a council meeting that started two minutes after he sent the email to constituents.
It sounds too absurd to be true, but the City Council meeting, in which seven members including Strauss overturned Mayor Durkan’s veto of a budget which cut police funding, including eliminating the Navigation Team, began at 3pm on September 22, two minutes after Strauss’ email to constituents.
You can read Strauss’ full email here.