AB 2007 (Boerner) Transitional Housing for Homeless Youth – Support

April 12, 2024

The Honorable Alex Lee

Chair, Committee on Human Services
California State Assembly
1020 N Street, Room 124
Sacramento, CA 95814

RE: Support for AB 2007

Dear Chair Lee,

Mental Health America of California (MHAC) is pleased to support Assembly Bill 2007 (Boerner), legislation which upon appropriation by the Legislature would establish the Unicorn Homes Transitional Housing for Homeless LGBTQ+ Youth Program for LGBTQ+ youth ages 18 to 14.

MHAC is a peer-run organization leading the state in behavioral health public policy and advocacy since 1957. The mission of MHAC is to assist and encourage communities, families and individuals to experience hope, wellness and recovery from mental health and substance use disorder issues through voluntary services that are delivered in their local community with compassion and respect for everyone’s dignity and autonomy.

Housing plays a crucial role in fostering a supportive environment for one’s recovery and wellness. This is especially important for our transitional age youth, ages 15 to 26, as 75% of mental health disorders manifest by age 24.[1] AB 2007 aims to support our homeless LGBTQ+ transitional age youth who have additionally experienced an Adverse Childhood Experience (ACE) of parental abandonment and neglect, with safe and stable housing.

In addition to housing, this bill aims to support the youth in addressing their adverse experiences with their families, in hopes of reunifying them. For this reason, we support AB  2007 (Boerner) and ask for your “Aye” vote. If you have any questions, or if MHAC can provide any assistance on this bill or any other behavioral health legislation, please do not hesitate to contact me or our Public Policy Director, Karen Vicari, at kvicari@mhaofca.org.

In Community,

Heidi L. Strunk
President & CEO

[1] California, S. of. (2024a, March 21). Early psychosis intervention plus. Mental Health Services Oversight and Accountability Commission . https://mhsoac.ca.gov/initiatives/early-psychosis-intervention-plus/