Seeking strategies to end homelessness, the city of Riverside will host representatives from government agencies throughout Southern California next month to share best practices.

“We know that government works best when it breaks down silos…” Riverside Mayor Rusty Bailey said. “This forum will present a great opportunity to share information and build towards a common strategy for increased cooperation on this key issue.”

The Oct. 23 Homelessness Forum will provide participants an opportunity to highlight what their municipalities are doing to solve chronic displacement of individuals and families, according to Riverside city spokesman Phil Pitchford.

Topics will include how law enforcement agencies deal with the homeless, what programs are working to curb the establishment of homeless encampments and what resources will be vital in the future to preventing homelessness, officials said.

Some of the agencies slated to be involved in the forum are already coordinating efforts to combat the problem, according to Pitchford.

“Homelessness is affecting every community in the Inland area, so we must make sure that we all are pulling in the same direction,” said Riverside City Councilman Chuck Conder. “It’s heartening to see our region’s leaders coming together to share our insights.”

Riverside has had an office dedicated to working on homeless solutions for several years, and Riverside County also has a branch in the Department of Public Social Services focused exclusively on reducing the county’s homeless population.

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