in Santee, California

What is the City of Santee doing in regards to homelessness?

The City of Santee is taking an active role in homelessness efforts and established a Homeless Working Group in the fall 2022. The group meets monthly to collaborate on resources, data sharing, testing of ideas, development of public information and future planning. The City also currently participates in the Encampments & Homeless Census, Point-in-Time Count and San Diego River clean-ups. The City has been awarded a joint Encampment Grant with San Diego County, the City of San Diego and Caltrans; and enacted a San Diego River Corridor Ordinance that went into effect in January 2023. City staff work with the Sheriff's Department, HOPE team, PATH San Diego and East County Transitional Living Center (ECTLC) to provide resources that are available to those willing to accept assistance. The cities of Santee and El Cajon are partnering with MTS on a pilot program to enforce ticket purchases to ride the trolley.  As of October 2023, the City of Santee has allocated $536,000 towards homelessness efforts.

The City of Santee must work within the legal framework mandated by the state and federal governments. For example, Prop 47 (enacted in January 2019) states that any stolen goods under the value of $950 is no longer a felony but a misdemeanor. And in decisions such as Martin v. Boise, the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals has established limits on when a city such as Santee may enforce “no camping” or similar local laws that have traditionally been employed to address conditions on public property.  These decisions prohibit enforcement of such local laws under conditions where an individual does not have access to a shelter and therefore does not have a real choice on where to sleep.  The City has addressed these limitations in its San Diego River Corridor Ordinance and is actively enforcing that local law.  However, current case law limits the City’s ability to enforce other local laws that have in the past been used to address conditions of concern on public property.

The City of Santee’s efforts continue to remain ongoing.


Frequently Asked Questions

Regarding Homelessness

What do I do when I see someone who appears to be homeless?

Homelessness is not a crime. If you want to help, there are organizations you can volunteer with or donate to. If a homeless person appears to be committing a crime, or is a harm to themselves or others, you should call 9-1-1.

What if my business is being affected by a homeless individual(s)?

We encourage business owners to contact the Santee Sheriff’s Department to request a trespass agreement.

Santee Sheriff's Business Office: 619-956-4000, however if it is an emergency, call 9-1-1.

What to do if you encounter an encampment?

We encourage business owners to contact the Santee Sheriff’s Department to request a trespass agreement.

Do not engage with any persons living in the encampment. Please report encampments via the MySanteeCA app on your cell phone (available for Apple and Android devices)

What if the homeless individual is asking for money or food?

Panhandling is prohibited in the City of Santee (7.32.020 Aggressive Solicitation). Call the Sheriff's Non-Emergency Dispatch at 858-565-5200.

What to do if an encounter becomes violent or uncomfortable?

If any situation becomes violent or uncomfortable, or you are in need of emergency aid, call 9-1-1.

How can I help?

The City of Santee works with a variety of organizations (San Diego River Park Foundation, East County Transitional Living Center, and Crisis House) that need volunteers. Or instead, make a donation to one of the many organizations serving homeless persons.

What resources are available?

2-1-1 San Diego - Housing, homeless, food assistance and other resources are available online or by calling 2-1-1.

PATH San Diego - Enhanced outreach programs and supportive housing services.

East County Transitional Living Center - Emergency shelter up to 28 days.

Crisis House - Diversion and outreach services to individuals and families currently experiencing homelessness. Assisting with housing navigation, deposits, first month’s rent, utility arrears, and more.

ECAssist - Provides housing, food, and other resource information specific to East County.

Santee Food Bank – Meal assistance.

What if I see a RV regularly occupied on Santee streets?

Persons occupying RV’s on the streets may be homeless. Resources are available to those who want assistance. The Santee Municipal Code requires recreational vehicles parked on City streets to be moved at least 300 feet every 72 hours.

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City of Santee
10601 Magnolia Ave.
Santee, CA 92071

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