Description: Several years ago, the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors, the County’s governing body, began an extensive conversation about the effectiveness and costs associated with the programs for the County’s homeless population. Having relied on anecdotal information from case workers for decades, the Board wanted to conduct a robust analysis of the agencies that served the homeless to understand the magnitude of these social services and to assess the most promising approaches to service delivery. The Board approached the County’s Chief Information Office (CIO) and asked if they might be able to provide the data for this study. The CIO told the Board that the agency had these data, but that the data were not organized in a useful way. For years, the CIO had housed these data in agency-specific silos. The Board persisted and asked Manuel Moreno and Halil Toros, two Ph.D. trained policy researchers, to develop an integrated data system to answer their questions about the County’s programs serving the homeless.
AISP Projects to Inform Policy
Summary: In 2006, the Los Angeles County Department of Public Social Services implemented the GR Housing Subsidy and Case Management Pilot Project. The pilot program was implemented to test whether assisting the homeless GR rent subsidy and coordinating access to other necessary supportive services reduces homelessness, increases employment, and/or increases receipt of Supplemental Security Income (SSI). The CEO’s Office of Research and Evaluation used its IDS to evaluate the outcomes and cost effectiveness of this pilot program.
Summary: The Long Beach Homeless Veterans Initiative (LBHVI) is a program associated with Los Angeles County’s Homeless Prevention Initiative (HPI). The Initiative seeks to house homeless veterans in the City of Long Beach, and to provide case management support aimed at directing these veterans to needed services, benefits, and supportive programs, including assistance for those who are permanently disabled in applying for Supplemental Security Income, as well as assistance for those who are able to work in finding employment. The CEO’s Research and Evaluation Services used the County’s IDS to conduct a cost avoidance study of the LBHVI to assess the service cost offsets associated with investment in the LBHVI.
Link to Project Reports: Cost Avoidance Yielded Through Participation In The Long Beach Homeless Veterans Initiative
Media Coverage: The Long Beach Homeless Veterans Initiative Saves Los Angeles County $1.6 Million
Los Angeles County’s Enterprise Linkages Project: An Example of the Use of Integrated Data Systems in Making Data-Driven Policy and Program Decisions
Summary: Governments at all levels are tasked with administering public programs that serve large numbers of people. The use of integrated data systems (IDS), which can be used to link administrative records from multiple public agencies into one database, offer a unique mechanism for providing the type of comprehensive information that is important for understanding the complex needs of vulnerable populations and for making data-based policy and program decisions that translate into more effective and efficient policies. In this paper, we draw on recent efforts to restructure Los Angeles County’s General Relief (GR) Program – a cash assistance program for indigent adults – as an example of how the effective use of IDS can play a crucial role in generating evidence that can guide important program and policy decisions.