City of La Crosse fills new Homeless Services Coordinator position

Published: Dec. 23, 2021 at 4:54 PM CST
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LA CROSSE, Wis. (WEAU) - The City of La Crosse is putting a greater emphasis on assisting the community’s homeless population.

Brian Sampson has been hired as the City’s first-ever Homeless Services Coordinator.

Sampson took the job last month, and has a background in social work and child welfare.

Mayor Mitch Reynolds wanted to create the position so that the City could provide direct leadership on the homelessness issue.

Sampson says he’s been building relationships with other organizations that address homelessness, and adds input is needed from each one when it comes to finding permanent housing for those who are unsheltered.

“There’s not one agency or one partner that can do it all, we all need to come to the table together,” Sampson said. “We all have a very important role to play, and so it’s just figuring out what does that look like, and how can we all help one another.”

Sampson also says there isn’t going to be one blanket solution to help everyone who can’t sustain housing.

“Each individual is in their own unique situation, they’re each their own person, it’s not just a one-size fits all,” Sampson explained. “It’s going to be, can we do a little of this, can we do a little of this, and how can we continue to meet each person where they’re at and what they want.”

One of the first orders of business is to figure out what to do with the people that are currently staying at the Econo Lodge.

The hotel on La Crosse’s north side is being used to house homeless people until March, and Sampson says plans are being developed for how to help those who will still need shelter after that point.

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