City of Long Beach
Public Information Office
411 W. Ocean Blvd,
Long Beach, CA 90802
Long Beach, CA – Long Beach Police Department (LBPD) Chief Wally Hebeish today announced the expansion of the department’s Quality of Life (QOL) team and the selection of four new QOL officers.
"The Quality of Life team does an incredible job, in partnership with our homeless service team, connecting people in our community who are experiencing homelessness to services, resources and housing,” said Mayor Rex Richardson. “I’m proud to see the Police Department expanding this team to help address homelessness in our community.”
"At the heart of community policing is relationships,” said Chief of Police Wally Hebeish. “The QOL team exemplifies how strong relationships within our community can lead to meaningful change, helping people connect to resources and find permanent housing. The expansion of this team shows our commitment to improving quality of life in our community.”
In the fiscal year 2023 budget, the LBPD was approved to add four full-time QOL officers to the team, bringing the total to eight full-time QOL officer positions. These additional positions will augment citywide efforts to address homelessness, focus on issues related to people experiencing homelessness, and homeless encampments, including during the current local homelessness emergency. With the expansion of this team, the department will now have four, two-officer teams that will each focus on one geographic division while maintaining the ability to work as single QOL officers, when necessary. All LBPD officers receive training in order to assist people experiencing homelessness in the community.
In 2022, LBPD’s Quality of Life and Mental Evaluation teams made over 9,100 contacts to offer services to people experiencing homelessness. This led to nearly 400 people receiving temporary housing and permanent housing for almost 40 people. The Quality of Life team participated in over 1,200 clean-ups throughout the city, a critical component to public health and safety that is done in conjunction with meaningful outreach to people experiencing homelessness conducted by Homeless Services Bureau staff. The Quality of Life team was created in 2007.
In addition to the expansion of the QOL team, the LBPD has also received funding to provide for overtime to support outreach and clean-up efforts along the riverbeds over a two-year period.
On Jan. 10, 2023, homelessness was proclaimed an emergency in Long Beach. The emergency allows for increased ability to hire or contract critical roles and recruit qualified candidates; more quickly engage needed services, material and labor; speed up large-scale construction projects such as motel conversions and tiny homes; and work through zoning requirements that currently exclude certain uses of existing properties.
Any member of the public wishing to report issues regarding homelessness or encampments should call the City’s non-emergency phone tree at 562.435.6711.