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Since 2021, funding increases have addressed urgent behavioral health cases in the community. Courtesy photo
Community CommentaryOpinion

Commentary: Change and results

Deliver results to San Diego County’s most pressing problems. 

Change the county’s culture to serve more people and communities, better.  

Over the last three years as the Supervisor representing District 3, those are the things my office has been doing to create a more healthy, sustainable, equitable, inclusive, and livable San Diego County. We’ve compiled a comprehensive report on our progress. 

One example in the report is our work to preserve San Diego County’s beautiful coastlines. These iconic locations are part of what makes our district such a special place. Keeping our beaches clean starts with keeping pollution out of the water.

 Since my first year on the Board of Supervisors, I have moved more than $200 million to be invested in stormwater infrastructure improvements, and nearly 19,000 beach water samples have been tested for ocean pollution. 

I’ve also advocated for the state and federal government to increase funding to support and resolve the Tijuana Sewage Emergency Environmental Crisis. This has been an ongoing battle since I was a kid, but we’re making headway, and I won’t stop fighting.    

Another challenge I’ve been working on is the homelessness crisis and the growing need for mental health and addiction treatment. Three years ago the county had no shelter beds or safe parking areas for those experiencing homelessness, and now we have nearly 900. With the passage of the Senior Shallow Rent Subsidy Program I championed, nearly 400 seniors at risk of becoming homeless have kept their homes.  

The demand for this program was very high, so we are working to grow it and are partnering with MIT to ensure the funds are being spent wisely. 

As a result of our efforts, the county has helped move 165% more people off of our streets and into shelters and housing. 

Since 2021, we have approved significant funding increases that have increased the number of full-time County Behavioral Health employees by 77% and activated 37 Mobile Crisis Response Teams that address urgent behavioral health cases in the community. This means more of our neighbors in District 3 and countywide are getting the treatment they need by calling our new hotline at 9-8-8. 

In my district, from Carlsbad to Coronado, we have one of the highest, if not the highest unmet demands for in-home support services (IHSS) for our seniors who are aging in place and need help. 

A friend of mine’s father-in-law has cancer and lives alone, and she needed help caring for him. I told her about the United Domestic Workers who provide in-home care and now he’s getting the support he needs. 

In just three years, 19% more seniors are now receiving IHSS than the three years before I entered office, and we’ve decreased wait times for people contacting our Aging Independence Service Call Center by 51%. 

 One of the things I love most about San Diego is our shared values. Together — in the face of Roe v. Wade being overturned — we have fought to ensure reproductive rights and access to reproductive healthcare and abortion care, are protected here in California. We have uplifted our LGBTQ+ community. 

We have pushed back against antisemitic rhetoric, xenophobia, and hate crimes. We have created new employment opportunities for veterans and neurodivergent individuals. And we have fought for better wages, benefits, and labor standards for workers.

Terra Lawson-Remer represents District 3 on the Board of Supervisors.

1 comment

steve333 March 18, 2024 at 3:18 pm

You haven’t done a thing to improve San Diego
Eagerly looking forward to voting you out next election
No more fauxgressives, no more DEI nonsense.

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