Fighting to end homelessness in Seattle
Daniel didn’t know much about homelessness when, right out of college, he volunteered to work in an emergency shelter in Seattle. He fell in love with the work and for the past 31 years has held a variety of leadership positions with the Downtown Emergency Service Center. Serving nearly 3,500 people at any given time, the center provides long-term supportive housing as well as emergency shelter, health care and crisis intervention. Daniel is a leading local voice in the fight for resources and policies that support people experiencing homelessness, particularly those living with mental illness, substance use disorders and disabilities. He has been a strong advocate for the housing first model, now the dominant approach, which understands that people need to be housed before they can effectively engage with other services. Since the COVID-19 pandemic highlighted the risks of congregate shelters, Daniel has worked to increase safer and more humane options, such as individual apartments in converted hotels.
Affiliations: Executive Director, Downtown Emergency Service Center