Sen. Josh Newman secures continued funding for long-term development of North Orange County Public Safety Collaborative


SACRAMENTO, CA – State Sen. Josh Newman led an effort to secure $8 million to bolster and expand the successful collaborative model developed by The North Orange County Public Safety Collaborative, officials announced today.

The Collaborative includes cities, police departments and Community Based Organizations (CBOs) that work together to coordinate and regionalize services in the focus areas of homelessness, youth violence prevention and intervention, and enhance post-incarceration reentry support. 

In 2017, Newman secured the original state budget grant of $20 million that created funding for four years. Across the region, cities and public safety officials have developed highly effective partnerships with more than 50 CBOs, collaborating on strategy, sharing resources, and responding to community needs.

The results have been so promising that federal officials recently awarded an additional $5 million to expand services.

Orange PD Homeless Liasion Officers, Cpl. Mark Bailey, left, and Officer Sean Feazell help Michael out of the police car and into his wheelchair after taking him, and his dog, Spike, to a homeless shelter in Buena Park.
Photo by Steven Georges/Behind the Badge

“The North Orange County Public Safety Collaborative continues to show real promise in devising thoughtful, interdisciplinary and regional approaches to homelessness, youth violence, and the challenges associated with post-incarceration re-entry across cities in Orange County,” Newman said. “This additional $8 million allocation will allow for the continuation and optimization of this groundbreaking regional and collaborative model.”

The continued funding included in California’s Budget Act of 2022 will enable the group to expand to additional cities and reach high risk populations while keeping communities safe.

“I want to express my gratitude to Senator Newman for supporting the communities in North Orange County. His hard work ensures the continuation and expansion of our innovative and collaborative model to solving regional public safety issues,” said Fullerton Police Chief Robert Dunn. “Senator Newman deserves credit for delivering the resources we need to enhance safety in North Orange County and for having the initiative to support a visionary and replicable model that has the potential to serve communities across California and beyond.”

The location in Fullerton where the HOPE Center will run mobile units. Photo by Steven Georges/Cornerstone Communications

Among its successes: The Collaborative commissioned a first-ever homeless census and developed a popular first-of-its kind technology to help police and community-benefit organizations deliver immediate services and shelter beds to people experiencing homelessness.

As the Collaborative moves toward long-term stability, it has turned its attention to supporting projects with long term solutions. This includes the development of mobile homeless outreach units, dispatched from the HOPE Center in Fullerton.

The unique center is slated to bring together social service workers, mental health providers, and neighboring police departments under one roof.

“Being a part of the Collaborative allowed us to see that more often than not, enforcement is the least effective tool when you are out in the streets engaging with the homeless community,” Dunn said. “Compassionately offering services has the most impact. Now that we know, we want to be prepared and have the most resources available for communities.”

About the North Orange County Public Safety Collaborative:

 The North Orange County Public Safety Collaborative is composed of community and public safety services leaders in North Orange County. It was created in 2017 through $20 million in state budget funding secured by Senator Josh Newman.  

It is a structured, collaborative, and highly leveraged approach to homelessness, youth violence prevention, and post-incarceration re-entry which aligns and coordinates the efforts of local law enforcement across a contiguous, manageable geography while also enlisting and funding local community-based organizations with experience and expertise in treating the underlying causes of these complex challenges.