A social worker arrives at the downtown Santa Barbara Public Library
With winter approaching, the Santa Barbara City Council on Tuesday approved a proposal to spend $93,000 to assign a full-time social worker to the city’s downtown public library, a resting place popular for those with nowhere to go.
The contract calls for a social worker employed by the Family Services Agency to ‘proactively engage homeless people’ and provide them with information about existing social services and have them sign into the database information shared by a multitude of government and non-profit agencies dealing with people who are homeless. In addition, the social worker will be required to respond to calls for assistance from nearby properties and business owners, perform “special assignments” such as homeless counts, observe and report criminal behavior, and work with the community. Santa Barbara Police Department Homeless Outreach Team.
The actual planned work is budgeted at $84,665, but it is customary to include a 10% cushion if required. Of that money, $56,000 would go to the social worker in the form of salary and benefits. Of the remaining $29,000, $18,000 should be spent on “direct” and “indirect” costs. The remaining funds — $10,000 — will be reserved for the program director and supervisor.
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