Strengthening communities by providing human services

January 25, 2017|Director's Update

Strengthening communities by providing human servicesBuilding strong communities is essential to economic prosperity. Our name “Commerce” often makes people first think of us as championing business and economic development. We do that, but more important is the notion that a healthy, safe community is the foundation for economic prosperity. One can’t exist without the other. Budget cuts at all levels of government are leaving more people at risk without adequate prevention and safety net services. This alarming trend is not limited to urban communities such as Seattle and Tacoma. The drivers are varied, the data often murky, and the solutions are complicated and often controversial.

  • Commerce awarded over $14 million in grants to 11 health care providers to develop additional facilities for short-term inpatient psychiatric detention services and state mental hospital diversion. The state’s investment is supported with another $14.6 million from other funding sources. Read more…$14 million for additional psychiatric care beds
  • Commerce awarded $1 million under the state’s Homeless Student Stability Act to expand programs in school districts that will help identify and rapidly connect homeless students and their families with housing services and agencies in their community.
  • The Washington State ABLE program is a tax-advantaged savings plan to help make saving simple and affordable for individuals with disabilities. The first governing board met in December 2016 and will launch the new program this summer.
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