This November, we ask that you join us in a month of thankfulness & giving. With the winter months upon us, we ask for your help in stocking our pantry with canned veggies. On average, our team prepares 25 cans of vegetables per day, 7 days per week, resulting in a need for at least 700 cans each month. Any help or support is greatly appreciated, and reinforces our mission to provide an end to homelessness, even if that means one person at a time.
Given everything else going on around us, we’ve made it easier than ever to donate, or even to start your own fundraising drive!
Visit our Canned Vegetable Drive page here, and click “Start a Fundraiser” in the panel on the right. Then you can set your own fundraising goal, and get a custom page to share on your social media and with your family and friends.
If you’d prefer, you can donate directly from the Canned Vegetable Drive page, or you can drop off your donation in person at any of these participating locations:
Thank you so much!
Bartlett Housing Solutions today introduces several policy and procedural changes to positively impact the operations of the organization. The Executive Director and Board of Directors of Bartlett House, Inc., are committed to maintaining a safe, diverse, inclusive and welcoming environment in which all individuals are treated with respect and dignity. We remain steadfast in our belief that no form of discrimination, harassment, or inappropriate conduct is tolerated by anyone in our facilities. Accordingly, to continue to encourage all individuals who utilize our services and facilities to report any discrimination, harassment, and other misconduct that they may experience or witness as well as emphasize that retaliation for making such a complaint is prohibited, we are updating our existing Client Grievance Policy and Procedure in the following ways:
Also, in addition to our existing in-house training, all Bartlett House staff and volunteers will receive additional training provided by an independent third party concerning dual relationships, discrimination, harassment, other misconduct, and retaliation which will include a review of our Code of Conduct and other applicable policies prohibiting the same. The Executive Director and the Board of Directors will also receive training by an independent third party on conducting employee investigations with respect to discrimination, harassment, and other misconduct.
We are taking these steps to continue to ensure that all people experiencing homelessness have a safe and accessible shelter available to them as well as continue to provide mechanism through which they are comfortable to report any discrimination, harassment or other inappropriate conduct so that it can be investigated and addressed, if needed.
Utilizing the Housing First model Bartlett Housing Solutions staff arrange for emergency, bridge, or supportive housing for homeless individuals who have insufficient resources to provide for these necessities. We believe there is a solution to homelessness – and it is affordable, sustainable housing!
Bartlett Housing Solutions has been facing the challenge of homelessness for more than three decades. Yes, there will continue to be people who must leave home because of eviction, emergencies, as well as those who simply face individual challenges that make the transition to independent living difficult. But, actually ending homelessness means something different – it means ensuring housing stability so that everyone has access to affordable, safe, accessible, and appropriate housing. Ending homelessness means doing things differently than we have been when it comes to addressing the problem of homelessness in our community.
Housing First does not mean” Housing Only.” While a Housing First approach prioritizes housing as a solution, it is only achieved with the appropriate blend of services and supports that make it possible for each individual to succeed, on a case-by-case basis. In the end, Housing first is the only evidence-based, proven practice endorsed by the Housing and Urban Development Fund for providers who work in the field of homelessness. To succeed, we must all get on the same page and work together.
Want to learn more? Here are some great resources:
Housing First in Permanent Supportive Brief
This brief provides an overview of the principles and core components of the Housing First model. It also provides information to permanent supportive housing providers about how they can implement a Housing First approach if they are not already doing so. Housing First is an approach to quickly and successfully connect individuals and families experiencing homelessness to permanent housing without preconditions and barriers to entry, such as sobriety, treatment, or service participation requirements. Supportive services are offered to maximize housing stability and prevent returns to homelessness as opposed to addressing predetermined treatment goals before permanent housing entry.
USICH Housing First Checklist
This checklist was designed to help you make a quick assessment of whether and to what degree housing programs — and entire systems — are employing a Housing First approach. Robust tools and instruments are available elsewhere to quantitatively measure program quality and fidelity to Housing First. This tool is not meant to take the place of those more rigorous assessments, but is intended to help Continuums of Care, private housing and services providers, funders, and other stakeholders to communicate about, and quickly assess, alignment with crucial Housing First approaches.
OrgCode works around the world to help end homelessness. They are located throughout the United States and Canada. They see firsthand and influence firsthand hundreds of communities each year. To learn more about homelessness from some of the best in the field on a vast range of handing topics on homelessness, go to: https://www.orgcode.com/learn
The goal of the WV Coalition to End Homelessness is to end homelessness in our state, and their focus is on communities. They can provide the tools to arm communities with strategies to get this accomplished.
Please visit: The West Virginia Coalition to End Homelessness
U.S. Interagency Council on Homelessness
The U.S. Interagency Council on Homelessness, coordinates and catalyzes the federal response to homelessness, by working in close partnership with senior leaders across 19 federal member agencies. By organizing and supporting leaders such as Governors, Mayors, Continuum of Care leaders, and other local officials, they drive action to achieve the goals of the federal strategic plan to prevent and end homelessness—and ensure that homelessness in America is ended once and for all.
Download Files at: https://www.usich.gov/solutions/
Here’s a great article on Solutions to Homelessness by USICH: https://www.usich.gov/solutions/
National Alliance to End Homelessness Resources and Facts
The Alliance has developed a series of fact sheets, Fact Checkers and Explainers, to answer common and frequent questions about homelessness policy and research. All fact sheets draw on the best expertise, data, and research available.
Institute for Children and Poverty
An independent research and policy think tank that conducts national research on the causes of family homelessness, the demographics of this growing population, and the programs most effective in assisting homeless families to transition to stability and self-sufficiency.
National Center for Homeless Education
Provides numerous resources on homeless children and youth, resources for advocates, etc.
National Center on Family Homelessness
A non-profit organization working towards long-term solutions that help homeless families become self-supporting and active participants in community life.
National Coalition for the Homeless
A national advocacy network of homeless persons, activities, service providers and others committed to ending homelessness through public education, policy advocacy, grassroots organizing, and technical assistance.
National Coalition for Homeless Veterans
(NCHV) – provides legislative advocacy, public education and technical assistance for service providers of homeless veterans.
National Student Campaign Against Hunger & Homelessness
A coalition of students and community members across the country working to end hunger and homelessness through service projects and action.
Coalition on Human Needs
The Coalition on Human Needs is an alliance of national organizations working together to promote public policies that address the needs of low-income and other vulnerable people.
Follow OrgCodes blog on a wide variety of topics at: https://www.orgcode.com/blog
When you suspect abuse or neglect, you should report your concerns to us and to the county office of the Department of Health and Human Resources where you live. Reports can also be made to the Abuse and Neglect Hotline ( 1-800-352-6513 ) 7 days a week, 24 hours a day.
For more information: Visit Here
West Virginia Department of Health & Human Resources
State Capitol Complex, Building 3 Room 206
Charleston, WV 25305
Phone: (304) 558-0684
Fax: (304) 558-1130
1) Claim: if you are mentally ill or have an addiction, you can’t come to Bartlett Housing Solutions and won’t fit in.
Fact: The vast majority of people we serve struggle with mental health issues, as well as substance abuse disorders. Additionally, our apartments at West Run are a permanent supportive housing project that requires both chronic homelessness and an underlying disability (substance abuse and mental illness, both amount of disabilities). Rent is 30% of adjusted gross income; however, income is not required. If someone’s income is zero dollars, their rent is zero dollars. The apartments are one-bedroom, fully furnished apartments, which include everything from bath towels to plates, cups, pots/pans, and silverware.
Our case management staff works with each tenant in their apartment to connect them to resources to promote housing sustainability and stability. Transportation is provided to take tenants to medical appointments, employment, grocery store trips, etc. There is a resident Council meeting held monthly for tenants to discuss their home and community with staff and each other.
2) Claim: The rules at the shelter prohibit people from being able to utilize it.
Fact: The “rules” to stay at the shelter are:
Case Management will assist you in locating a unit, getting identification, and coordinating mainstream resources to promote your housing sustainability.
3) Claim: Bartlett just wants to keep people in the shelter for as long as possible and does not want them in community-based housing.
Fact: This could not be further from the truth. Bartlett strives to get folks into a stable housing placement as quickly as possible. We strive to do so in 30 days or less; however, due to the challenges of finding appropriate housing units that meet the client’s individual needs, we are averaging 60 days to transition folks out of the shelter.
4) Claim: Bartlett Housing is only a shelter; people need housing.
Fact: Bartlett housing solutions offers multiple programs. We have the emergency triage shelter located downtown, which serves as an emergency place to go if you have no other option. Once there, and assessment is done to identify your needs and goals. Then a referral can be made for a housing placement that meets those needs and goals. The shelter serves as a triage, much like an emergency room at the hospital. You are triaged and referred to as a housing program/placement based on your needs and wants. However, you can stay in triage until placement is available.
Bartlett also offers transitional housing, which provides 24-hour shelter in a suite with a private bathroom and community living space, such as a lounge and dining room where three meals are provided each day. Bartletts Rapid Re-Housing program is our community-based housing where we provide medium-term financial support in the form of security deposits and rent, while also providing intensive in-home case management to ensure housing sustainability.
Lastly, our permanent supportive housing and affordable housing programs provide fully furnished apartments, including dishes, towels, bedding, silverware, etc. This accommodation also provides onsite, in-home case management, transportation, and community support. The 1 bedroom apartments are for chronically homeless individuals with a disability (substance use and mental health qualify as disabilities), and rent is based on 30% of their adjusted gross income. Income is not required. If their income is zero, their rent is $0. Our 2 bedroom, 2 bath apartments are section 8 eligible for those wishing to utilize that option for subsidy.
5) Claim: Bartlett Housing Solutions has a long list of people banned from the shelter who aren’t allowed to stay there.
Fact: The only individuals not permitted at the shelter are those who were severely violent to staff or other clients, Additionally, when COVID hit, we suspended that and allowed everyone to utilize the facility which we operated 24 hours a day so that folks had a place to go. Bartlett never takes the decision lightly to prohibit anyone from entering the shelter. However, we must sometimes make that difficult decision if violence is involved to ensure the safety of all.
6) Claim: The existing system doesn’t work, and people were housed because of Diamond Village.
Fact: “The system” is what housed the people from Diamond Village. The WVCEH and Bartlett Housing Solutions were the agencies that housed every person at Diamond Village. Initially, there were 22 people at the encampment. There were 15 people housed, all of which were housed in either the WVCEH or Bartlett’s housing programs. There should be only seven people remaining at the encampment – as of today; there are 32.
7) Claim: Nobody meets those experiencing homelessness where they are or asks their input.
Fact: The entire model of “Housing First” and Housing Focused Shelter” is including the client in the development of their housing plan: Where do you want to live? What do you need to make that happen? How can we assist you in doing that? Do you want treatment? If you don’t want treatment, let’s ensure you can prioritize your housing so you can stay housed with an addiction. Additionally, we have resident councils and a person with lived experience on our board.
8) Claim: People are homeless because of an addiction or mental illness.
Fact: The vast majority of people in our country that have an addiction or severe mental health issue are housed. People are homeless because they lack a home.
9) Claim: The CDC states that you shouldn’t break up an encampment.
Fact: The CDC has stipulations and guidance for encampment, in this instance, which include masks, sanitary provisions, social distancing, not having new people in and out of the encampment, and daily screening for symptoms. This encampment is not practicing social distancing, is unsanitary; residents are not wearing masks and are in and out of the encampment as well as having visitors and are not being adequately monitored for COVID symptoms.
10) Claim: Bartlett staff and clients have sexually harassed, assaulted, stolen from, and discriminated against former clients.
Fact: Bartlett housing solutions have a grievance policy, which provides several different outlets for reporting grievances. We have NOT received ANY reports from any of the individuals in the encampment, or any agency working with them, outlining any specific staff member(s) or incident despite multiple requests. If anyone has information regarding these serious allegations, please email me at KDemasi@bartletthousingsoultions.org. Please provide as much detail as possible so that they can be investigated. We do not take these claims lightly at all. We do struggle with the helplessness of repeatedly being accused of such horrible things, without being provided with anything to investigate and to address – DESPITE MULTIPLE REQUESTS.
Our staff represents younger and older individuals, both male and female, with diverse sexual orientations so these allegations are incredibly hurtful and equally concerning if ever substantiated. They go against the core of who we are. Bartlett Housing Solutions has a zero-tolerance for any form of misconduct, including but not limited to: sexual harassment and assault and discrimination and will terminate any employee ever determined to be guilty of the same.
Bartlett proudly employs several former program participants and values their insight into our service delivery and codes of conduct. Additionally, Bartlett has a board member with lived experience to ensure the same. Again, please direct any and all reports of misconduct to the director at the email address listed above.
Finally, it is essential to note that upon research of most of the individuals staying at the encampment, for whom the advocacy group alleged misconduct, the vast majority are not reflected anywhere in the statewide database. Any and all clients that stay at any of Bartlett’s programs are included in that database. How can people make allegations against us if they have never utilized our services?
11) Claim: Bartlett doesn’t allow animals unless they are service animals, so they can’t come in if they have a pet.
Fact: All Bartlett Housing Solutions programs are pet-friendly. We have multiple pets in our programs.
12) Claim: Bartlett hasn’t gone down to the encampment at all and hasn’t housed anyone from there.
Fact: The current system of which aims to move folks into housing efficiently and effectively includes several avenues to do so: calling the Coordinated Entry number, going into the emergency shelter, or speaking to a street outreach worker. Bartlett provides the emergency shelter piece where the WVCEH provides the outreach worker and coordinated entry piece. Bartlett does not currently have an outreach position. Additionally, Bartlett’s team members have been down to the encampment to locate individuals whom we had a housing referral to move them into housing. Of the 15 people housed from the encampment: 100% of them were house by the WVCEH or Bartlett Housing Solutions. The very system that this group says isn’t working is the very system that housed them.
13) Claim: Bartlett isn’t open 24 hours, so the people have nowhere to go during the day.
Fact: The downtown triage shelter is not open 24 hours a day; however, as previously mentioned, the Triage Shelter is not a housing placement. The goal is to move people out of the shelter as quickly as possible into other housing programs (either our programs or the WVCEH’s housing programs), which are 24-hour programming.
14) Claim: Bartlett doesn’t offer a sense of community and family.
Fact: If you ask our clients this question, they will adamantly disagree. Our clients are outraged by the allegations alleged against us and have asked why no one is talking to them. Our PSH tenants are very much a family. They often visit each other in their apartments, have cookouts, cook together, go fishing together, and share items the others may need. During quarantine, we had a group page for everyone to share their needs and support because they couldn’t socialize the way they used to. Here are just a few examples of their community and support for one another.
15) Claim: Bartlett isn’t safe.
Fact: Bartlett Housing Solutions has cameras throughout the building for security and staff at all times. There have been zero reports of specific safety concerns from either staff or clients.
16) Claim: Bartlett’s shelter is infested with bed bugs.
Fact: This is simply not true. The shelter does not have bed bugs.
17) Claim: Bartlett has black mold.
Fact: The shelter does not have black mold.
18) Claim: Bartlett is filthy and dirty.
Fact: The shelter is old but in no way dirty. It is cleaned thoroughly at least 1 time per day with hospital-grade disinfectants and cleaner. New linen is issued each night and laundered by our staff.
Update, June 23, 2020: Bartlett Housing Solutions has transitioned from our initial COVID-19 operational standard to a more precautionary status, as our surrounding communities begin to reopen. However, our staff and residents are still required to uphold many of the operational standards initially implemented. We continue to hold the health and well-being of our residents and staff as our highest priority.
If you have questions regarding our COVID-19 Operational Standards, please contact our Executive Director at 304-292.0101.
April 2020: As our nation faces one of the most difficult times in recent history, Bartlett Housing Solutions is taking the necessary steps to ensure the safety and wellbeing of both our residents and our staff. As of March 16, 2020, both of our facilities are on lockdown. All clients are told to shelter in place. Staff efforts are focused on providing 24-hour coverage at both facilities as well as coordinating food and supplies to bring in to our clients. Provisions have also been made to go out and pick up needed items, including medications for our clients.
In addition, the additional operational changes have been implemented:
At this time, we cannot allow clients to leave the facilities and return. If clients leave, they will not be permitted to return. Similarly, we cannot take any new clients at the shelter at this time. Please understand that these difficult decisions were made to ensure the health and safety of everyone.
December 31, 2019
Mountain State Brewery | Morgantown, WV
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