San Juan County listening forums

San Juan County Department of Health and Community Services is working with the Washington State Department of Social and Health Services Community Services Division, Opportunity Council and the three local resource centers to host “Community Listening Forums.” The events are the result of DSHS’s goal of decreasing poverty in half by 2025. The focus of these forums is to communicate the unique economic hardships and barriers that face San Juan County residents and explain the systems currently in place to help alleviate these hardships.

The forums will take place on San Juan Island, Tuesday, Nov. 6, 12:30-4 p.m. at the Grange; on Orcas, Wednesday, Nov. 7, 8-11:30 a.m. at Emmanuel Episcopal Parish; on Lopez, Wednesday, Nov. 7, 1:30-5 p.m. at the family resource center. RSVP at

The following topics will be explored: What are the main drivers of poverty in the county and is it changing? What are the most promising community-led programs to reduce poverty and create intergenerational opportunity? The state hopes to learn about innovative local best practices employed to promote intergenerational opportunity and develop better relationships between state policies/programs and the needs of communities.