St. Louis County Public Health & Human Services

Public Health, Children & Family Services, Home & Community Based Services, Behavioral Health, and Economic Services & Supports


is a community where all people are safe and healthy.


is to protect, promote, and improve the health and quality of life in St Louis County.
We do this through a diverse set of programs, services, and initiatives that work at all levels and throughout our community.

Our goal is to help people achieve a better life. We do this by helping people we serve overcome – or make progress despite – the obstacles blocking their path to self-sufficiency and by working in partnership to improve the health of our entire community.

Sometimes individuals and communities face challenges that affect their health and quality of life. St. Louis County Public Health and Human Services works to prevent those challenges and offers a helping hand when life’s obstacles seem insurmountable. We guide people through their challenges and direct them to appropriate resources.

Service Centers

Service centers are conveniently located in four communities throughout our county. Each center provides access to financial, social, and public health service. For the most up-to-date access information, please visit our website at

Economic Impact on our Local Economy

The economic impact of St. Louis County Public Health and Human Services on the local economy was estimated at more than $665 million when last assessed in 2020. Specifically:

Financial Assistance


Social Services


Public Health


Financial assistance determines eligibility for Medical Assistance (MA), which provides adults and children with the insurance coverage to receive needed medical care and services. This amounts to more than $368 million in MA payments each year. These payments go directly to local clinics and hospitals, providing significant revenue to these private sector facilities that employ thousands of people in the medical and dental professions. Another example is the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP). We authorize nearly $43.8 million to help families with children, the elderly, and other low income people purchase healthy food. This money is spent at area grocery stores and retailers, supporting hundreds of jobs at those stores and their suppliers.

More than $255 million is allocated annually in contracts to support social service programming. Through these contracts community organizations are funded to provide critical services for children, child care, substance use, mental health, and people with disabilities.

Nearly $1.6 million is allocated annually through contracts with organizations supporting Public Health’s core work. Through these contracts community organizations are funded to provide critical services for children, childcare, mental health, and individuals with disabilities.

Public Health

Public Health logo

The Public Health Division works to promote and protect the health of all residents in St. Louis County. Our work is done through assessing the health and environments of individuals and communities, implementing educational programs, conducting research, and recommending policies that promote health. Look for us at your community event.

St. Louis County Public Health’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic

Throughout the pandemic, public health professionals in St. Louis County worked alongside social service professionals, emergency management staff, safety and risk staff, and countless internal and external partners through different phases, roles, and responsibilities highlighted in this report. Each contribution was valuable.

The Covid-19 pandemic was exhausting and challenging on many different levels. After the spikes in case rates due to the delta and omicron variants, we are now experiencing manageable transmission rates and lower morbidity and mortality than we’ve seen throughout most of the pandemic. In May 2023, the Public Health Emergency for SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19) that was declared in January 2020 ended and, although we will most likely continue to see peaks and valleys in our disease trends, we believe the worst of the pandemic is now behind us.

Addressing Community Needs

The Community Health Assessment (CHA) and Community Health Improvement Plan (CHIP) is a cycle in which we collect and review data about our community’s health and use that information to plan public health initiatives. The community health assessment looks at the conditions in which we live, work, learn, and play. This helps us determine the priority health areas most impacting our community. In 2023, we collaborated with community members and partners to complete a 5 year community health assessment. In 2024, we will continue working with partners to determine priority health areas and develop a community health improvement plan, which includes identifying strategies that could make an impact over the next five years.

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A Framework That Guides Our Work

The Foundational Public Health Responsibilities Framework outlines the responsibilities of the governmental public health system. This framework seeks to standardize expectations of public health across the state because no matter where someone lives, they should have the same public health protections, and the same opportunity to achieve their best health. With the help of a public health infrastructure grant, we are working to modernize our public health system to equip us with the capacity and resources needed to address 21st century challenges.

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Here are some of the ways Public Health follows this framework to support the health needs of our community

Communicable Disease Prevention 

St. Louis County Public Health offered 57 infection control consultations to various community agencies, organizations, and businesses.

We provided 3,942 contacts to families to recommend childhood vaccines for those not up to date.

Responding to the mpox outbreak beginning in 2022 and through 2023, Public Health Nurses worked alongside community partners to provide vaccines to 93 individuals for the prevention and control of the mpox virus.

We continue to respond to a syphilis outbreak and an HIV outbreak, working with our partners on prevention efforts and providing outreach related to communicable diseases.

St. Louis County Public Health’s analysis of the 2022 Minnesota Student Survey highlighted a continued need for mental health programs and partner offerings such as The Lion Heart project and Youth Mental Health Day events. Our efforts in strategizing with districts on whole child policies includes support of programs such as Farm to School and the newly mandated naloxone in school’s policy. Our Public Health school liaison offered updates, information, resources, support, and consultations to all 12 school districts located in the county, which includes 80+ individual public, charter, and private schools.

In June, with support from a public health infrastructure grant we partnered with the American Indian Community Housing Organization (AICHO) and Fond du Lac Human Services to launch a communications campaign to enhance awareness of the HIV outbreak affecting Duluth and the surrounding areas. The campaign amplified indigenous ways of knowing and paid trusted messengers from the community to inform and deliver messages on testing, treatment, and destigmatization.

Chronic Disease & Injury Prevention

In 2023, in partnership with the U of M Extension Office with funding made possible by a Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration grant, St. Louis County Public Health distributed over 10,000 fentanyl test strip kits to community partners for them to pass along to clients and individuals.

Through substance misuse prevention work, we build local capacity by providing leadership, driving innovation, understanding gaps, enhancing partnerships, leveraging surveillance of data trends, promoting education, and supporting primary, secondary, and tertiary prevention efforts. We aim to shift misperceptions around use and establish harm reduction as a prevention strategy.

In partnership with northern St. Louis County Sheriff’s Offices, nearly 50 pounds of unused medication was collected during the Drug Enforcement Administration’s National Drug Take Back days in 2023.

Addressing Environmental Public Health Issues

Public Health Nurses responded to 51 cases of acute lead toxicity in children and pregnant women; worked with health partners to abate environmental risks and address lead toxicity.

Health begins where we live, learn, work, and play. We all live in conditions that we cannot individually control but that can affect our health — the air we breathe, the water we drink, the food we eat, and the conditions in which we live. St. Louis County Public Health protects against environmental health hazards by addressing aspects of living conditions that may pose risks to health. Public Health professionals work to mitigate risks such as exposure to lead contamination and public health nuisances.

Public Health staff followed up on 61 animal bite reports for the prevention of rabies infection and 5 public health nuisance complaints.

Maternal Child Health

The Family Health and Supports team in St. Louis County provides free, voluntary home visiting services and supports to families within our community. Through our Maternal Early Childhood Sustained Home visiting program (MECSH), our nurses provide client-centered, direct education and support, make referrals, and coordinate services for both the caregiver and child to help the whole family thrive during pregnancy, postpartum, and early childhood. We also work directly with a licensed alcohol and drug counselor (LADC), through our Northstar Families program, to help families experiencing substance misuse. By coming alongside families during this critical time in life, we can empower them to create the best start possible for them and for their children.


group parenting sessions were offered and


individuals completed.


home visits by Public Health Nurses.


monthly participants in Women Infant & Children (WIC) Clinics. 

Access to and Linkage with Clinical Care

Access to quality healthcare services is a critical factor in maintaining one’s physical and mental well-being. We work to ensure that residents have access to the spectrum of care – promoting the use of primary care, especially for our youngest residents, all the way to connecting aging adults to health services.


contacts provided to families to recommend primary care doctor visits.


St. Louis County residents aged 65 years or older received care coordination from Public Health Nurses and Social Workers.


individuals served through a partnership between St. Louis County and Children’s Dental Services.

Children & Family Services

The Children and Family Services Division works with children and their families, with the goal of keeping children in their homes and in the care of people with whom they have an existing relationship. We partner with families to provide preventive services, supportive resources, intervention, and, when necessary, placements to ensure safety, permanency and well-being for children.


All children in our community flourish because families are able to safely care for and meet their needs.


We strive to keep children in their homes and in the care of people with whom they have an existing relationship. We partner with families to provide preventative services, supportive resources, interventions and, when necessary, placements to ensure safety, permanency and well-being for children.

in 2023

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children were served in voluntary programs in 2023, which are prevention and early intervention services. These services support families when they are facing challenges, where social workers work alongside families to overcome the barriers.
unique children were served through mental health case management.
unique children were subjects of a screened-in maltreatment report.
unique children entered out-of-home placement during 2023 and there were a total of 789 unique children in out-of-home placement at some point during the year.
children were served in voluntary programs in 2023, which are prevention and early intervention services. These services support families when they are facing challenges, where social workers work alongside families to overcome the barriers.
unique children were served through mental health case management.
unique children were subjects of a screened-in maltreatment report.
continuous placement discharges in 2023. Of these, there were 222 reunifications with parents/primary caretakers, 60 transfers of permanent legal and physical custody to a relative, 56 adoptions finalized, 18 living with other relatives, 39 reached age of majority, and 25 with other circumstances.
unique children entered out-of-home placement during 2023 and there were a total of 789 unique children in out-of-home placement at some point during the year.

Placement Discharges
in 2023

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Parent mentoring & peer recovery support

St. Louis County has been contracting with community partners to provide parent mentors and peer recovery specialists to support families served in child protection. Parent mentors have prior lived experience in the child protection system and provide information and support to the families in navigating the processes and systems. Peer recovery specialists have prior lived experience related to substance use and can offer support for recovery to parents who are currently struggling with addiction. Substance use is the primary reason children are placed outside of the home in St. Louis County, and connection to both resources can result in positive outcomes for families sooner. This work is made possible by the Child Protection Opioid Epidemic Response Allocation issued by the MN Department of Human Services to all counties.

Working with Tribal Partners to Support American Indian Families

St. Louis County Children and Families Services serves families throughout the county. One area of focus is our work with Indigenous families and partnering with Tribes to provide those services. The work is guided by the Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA) and the Minnesota Indian Family Preservation Act (MIFPA), and St. Louis County aims to honor the spirit of the laws, as well as the requirements. The requirements include inquiry, timely MIFPA and ICWA notices to Tribes, active efforts, placement preferences, and Qualified Expert Witness (QEW). The Department of Human Services reviews county performance in meeting the above requirements through random case audits, with the expectation of 100% compliance.

2023 Department of Human Services Data
This graphic depicts SLC’s compliance compared to the rest of the state. CFS staff are committed to the work and achieved close to 100%, as well as surpassed the state average.

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Keeping Families Safely Together

Children and Family Services (CFS) is working to improve earlier intervention and prevention efforts with the hope to decrease child maltreatment and out-of-home placements for children. This requires building a comprehensive prevention continuum that can meet the needs of all children and families.

Teeter Totter showing then when you put in more prevention efforts, child maltreatment and placements goes down.

Some of the earlier intervention and prevention services being developed.

Hover over the sections below to learn more.

Click the sections below to learn more.

Parent Support Outreach Program

A voluntary, early intervention program that focuses on a family’s strengths and needs, and aims to help children and parents thrive. 388 children participated in PSOP case management in 2023.

Circle of Security

Groups that support and strengthen secure parent-child relationships

Family Resource Centers

Through funding from the Sauer Family Foundation, we are partnering to develop a network of centers that support communities and families.

Family Support Services

Social workers partnering with families to make it through difficult times. 253 children participated in FSS case management in 2023

Public Health Home Visiting partnerships

Social workers and public health nurses collaborating to improve family health and safety.

Children’s Mental Health case management

Services to eligible children and their families to help meet the mental health needs of children. 206 children participated in CMH case management in 2023.

Intensive Family-Based Services

In home, trauma informed support to help parents increase parenting skills, enhance coping strategies and foster family resiliency.
Check and Connect Logo

Re-engaging Students After the COVID-19 Pandemic Through Check & Connect

The St. Louis County board of commissioners allocated nearly $5.5 million in American Rescue Plan (ARPA) funding toward helping support and re-engage students after the COVID-19 pandemic. 34 schools throughout St. Louis County have participated in the Check & Connect program. Check & Connect, created by the University of Minnesota, is a proven, evidence-based, comprehensive student engagement intervention. Students are referred to Check & Connect based on attendance, behavior, and course performance data indicating that they are potentially at high risk for disengagement, leading to poor school outcomes. This program will begin transitioning to schools over the 2024/25 and 25/26 school years.

The program will continue in years 2024-2026 with additional ARPA funding, along with funding from the local school districts.


coordinators support


mentors at


schools across
St. Louis County.


students were served from the implementation of the project in August 2021 through November 2023.

More than


students are being supported at any one time.


of students decreased suspensions.


of students decreased absenteeism.

Economic Services
& Supports

The Economic Services and Supports (ESS) Division administers state and federal programs that provide assistance to those in need. This includes medical care, food, cash, child care, child support, and emergency assistance.

Employees served an average of

people and
households, with an average benefit of
per month through the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP).
$ 0


was issued through the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP).
$ 0
was provided to people from General Assistance and Minnesota Supplemental Aid cash.
$ 0

ESS provided

in emergency assistance to
$ 0
low-income individuals received healthcare through Medical Assistance (Medicaid).
children were able to access child care with Child Care Assistance totalling
$ 0 .

The Minnesota Family Investment Program provided

in support, with an average of
$ 0
individuals served each month.

The ESS Division provides child support services on behalf of the state to promote parental responsibility so children receive the financial support of both parents when they do not live together. This includes establishing parentage and helping to locate the non-custodial parent; establishing, reviewing, and enforcing court orders for support; and collecting and processing child support and spousal maintenance payments.

IN 2023, ESS handled

child support cases and collected
$ 0 .

Our financial assistance programs serve as a short-term safety net that helps to stabilize families in need and guide them toward self–sufficiency.

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Minnesota Family Investment Program (MFIP)

The MFIP program is designed to help families meet their economic needs. Families receive cash and food benefits from the county while working one-on-one with an employment counselor to make an individualized plan to help them reach their goals and move toward self-sufficiency. St Louis County partners with Arrowhead Economic Opportunity Center (AEOA), City of Duluth, Community Action Duluth, Human Development Center (HDC), Jobs Empowerment Training (JET, formerly NEMOJT) and SOAR Career Solutions to provide employment and training services for individuals we serve.

The Minnesota Family Investment Program provided

in support, with an average of
$ 0
individuals served each month.

Watch a story about a family that used this program.

Medical Assistance Renewals

During the COVID-19 Pandemic, special measures were put into place to protect people’s medical insurance. Individuals on Medical Assistance and MinnesotaCare were given continuous eligibility without submitting paperwork or completing annual renewal. Starting in June 2023, Medical Assistance renewals started up again in a process called the “great unwinding.” From June 2023 – May 2024, all 54,287 medical assistance and MinnesotaCare recipients in St Louis County need to go through the renewal process. To ensure that the public was aware of these government-directed changes, the Economic Services and Supports staff engaged in a comprehensive outreach initiative, attending community events to share promotional materials and launching a broad media campaign (that was viewed over 2.1 million times). This campaign included TV commercials, radio and streaming ads, social media outreach, billboards, and signage at Bentleyville.

To date, 32,102 St. Louis County recipients have completed the renewal process, providing the documentation necessary to maintain health insurance coverage through these public programs. ESS staff helped 13,595 individuals complete the renewal process manually and worked diligently to review 15,164 system-based renewals. If you are on Medical Assistance and have not renewed yet, you can call 218-726-2101 to find out more about your renewal date.

Home and Community-
Based Services

The Home & Community Based Services division serves children and adults who may benefit from services/supports for needs related to disabilities, chronic illness, brain injuries, developmental disabilities, and aging.

Here’s a snapshot of some of the ways we serve our community:

intake team triaged

0 .
MnCHOICES assessments initiated.
people received services through disability waivers
$ 0 .
people received services through SILS (semi-independent living services)
$ 0 .
children / young adults received a Family Support Grant
$ 0 .
people received services through Elderly Waiver(EW), Alternative Care Waiver(AC) and/or Essential Community Supports(ECS).

Creating a Safety Net

The Home and Community Based Services Division is thoughtfully defining and developing our role as a “safety net.” Our current safety net support includes case management for children, transition age youth and interim (short-term) situations for adults and children. Social workers work closely with people to assess their unique needs and help them to access specialized services and supports.

Illustration of multiple hands coming together to form a circle.

Our work is person-focused

We value a person’s right to make their own decisions and manage their life (self-determination). We engage in an informed decision-making process to support people in choosing the services and resources that best meet their unique needs and the achievement of their personal goals. We focus on a person’s desired outcomes, preferences, experience and potential impact on their quality of life.

For example, if someone presented with a need for employment support, their case manager would talk with them about their choices, including a discussion about potential risks for not accessing support at all. The case manager may take them to meet with multiple resources that offer employment support to find a good match. If a support option was decided upon, a discussion would occur about how, when, and where the person wants that support provided to them. Informed choice offers individuals dignity of risk, independence, and the opportunity for self-determination.

Javid’s story

Javid was born in Calcutta, India. He contracted Polio as a young child. His mom threw him down a flight of stairs when he was just a few years old to try to kill him. The doctors took him to an orphanage as his wounds healed. A woman in northern Minnesota was adopting his sister and the orphanage asked her to consider adopting Javid too, which she did. He came to Minnesota at age 7 and had to learn English. Javid then grew up here.    

Now an adult, St. Louis County social workers have been empowering Javid to make his own choices and live independently. He began to live on his own and was doing really well, until he got a sore on his body, causing him to have to move into a nursing home. One of his workers said, “Social work is about really digging in and getting to know the individuals you serve to see what would support them best. It is a privilege and an honor to get to really know the people we serve; to be able to deeply understand them and their needs and then connect them to services that will support them in living with independence and dignity.” 

One of Javid’s dreams was to be able to tell his story, so that providers could understand that those they are serving are individuals with unique needs. He spoke at the 2023 St. Louis County Health & Human Service Conference. He was surrounded by social workers who have supported him along the way.

A photo of Javid with his social workers and support team.

Javid (middle) pictured with his social workers and support team.

“Person-centered means deeply listening to those they serve and providing exactly what they need.”

Behavioral Health

The Behavioral Health division provides assistance to adults with mental health needs, those who benefit from substance use and recovery support, and those experiencing homelessness or who need housing support. We also protect vulnerable adults from abuse, exploitation, and neglect.

The Behavioral Health division consists of four areas:

We provide case management services for people with a serious and persistent mental illness and services from assertive community treatment teams in the community and via specialty courts.

We provide comprehensive assessments and treatment coordination for people who need assistance navigating services.

We work to secure grant funding for community partners to provide shelter beds, outreach services, staff for the coordinated-entry system, and assistance with rent and utilities. Staff from this unit coordinate the continuum of care, organize the point-in-time count, and long-term homeless bed development.

We assess or investigate allegations of abuse, neglect, or financial exploitation of vulnerable adults. We offer services to vulnerable adults and the people that support them to help reduce or eliminate future harm. Guardianship is a program for persons for whom the Court has appointed a decision maker to make certain decisions on behalf of the person subject to guardianship.

A snapshot of some of our work

Adult protection received

reports to assess for allegations of abuse, neglect, or financial exploitation of a vulnerable adult.
of those reports were opened and investigated. Over the last year
people in the county received guardianship services from St. Louis County.

Case management is provided in a variety of ways by social workers at the county. We worked with

people who are part of intensive services through specialty courts and
people who have serious and persistent mental health needs. Counties must screen people who may meet the criteria for civil commitments,
were screened and the courts civilly committed
of those people for mental illness, substance dependence or both.

Crisis Services

Wellstone crisis stabilization in the north has 10 beds and the occupancy rate was

St. Louis County partners with community providers for crisis services.

0 %

Birch Tree Center in Duluth has 12 crisis stabilization beds and the occupancy rate was

Additional capacity was added in early 2024 with the opening of Yellow Leaf Support Center.
0 %

Crisis response providers, county staff, and law enforcement work with 911 dispatch to offer crisis response services to callers who do not need a police response.

Northern SLC received

Calls to crisis response for information, referrals, warm line services or the crisis response team


calls to crisis response and

calls to 988

Southern SLC received


calls to crisis response and

calls to 988

Addressing Substance Use & Recovery

915 comprehensive assessments were completed by SLC, including correctional settings (NERCC or AJC), 121 of these were for parents working with Children and Family Services.

Our team worked with a person in the hospital who had serious physical health issues and utilized a wheelchair, but did not want a comprehensive assessment and was not interested in going to treatment. A judge committed her to receive services and required her to go to outpatient treatment. She receives rides to her outpatient treatment 3 days per week and is making valuable connections. She is making incredible progress! Her diabetes has diminished, and she is now able to walk. She keeps in touch with the staff to let them know how she is doing.

People at group therapy session.
Someone handing a certificate of graduation to another person.

Completing the comprehensive assessment is just one part of the job, but it is also (and maybe more importantly) taking the time to engage with and understand the real person behind the disease of addiction. One of the people we recently worked with called to let us know that he just completed a 9-month treatment program and was asked to be a mentor. He finished that training, while also getting his GED and is now studying psychology. He called to thank the team for the impact on his life.

The St. Louis County Transitional Assertive Community Treatment (TACT) Duluth team and the Assertive Community Treatment team are working to decriminalize mental illness by collaborating with Arrowhead Regional Corrections (ARC) Probation and the Duluth Police Department (DPD) CORE team. This initiative is aimed to support individuals involved in the criminal justice system who experience a mental illness and often a substance use disorder. More than 140 people were served in 2023 and there have already been many positive outcomes including diverting individuals from the criminal justice system when appropriate, communicating with the courts, resolving warrants, setting up review hearings, and expedited referrals to CORE and other critical supports. St. Louis County has 3 teams and they served 166 people in 2023.

Click image to enlarge

One incredible impact of this collaboration is that of a young woman engaging in criminal behavior who was also demonstrating signs of acute psychosis and relapse with substances. (She had recently been in custody 4 times in total for twelve days.) TACT was able to work with the Duluth Police Department to have the woman safely transported to the Emergency Department where she was admitted for Behavioral Health Stabilization. This allowed TACT to re-engage and work with her to develop a supportive discharge plan. The woman also had outstanding warrants from other counties, which the liaison Probation Officer was able to resolve so that, when she was released, she did not have to immediately worry about the warrants.

Now, this woman can focus on her own recovery vision as her housing was able to be saved and she has begun the process of reunifying with family and positive supports. She is re-engaged with TACT services as well and will receive the support to address all her criminal matters and the likelihood of reducing recidivism.

People supporting each other in a rehab session.


Our Housing and Homelessness Programs team does a lot of work behind the scenes to support the critical work of our partners across the continuum from prevention, shelter and street outreach to navigation services and permanent supportive housing. This involves significant planning, coordination, collaboration, grant management, evaluation and systems change work focusing on equity and lived experience.

Hibbing Homeless Shelter

Home on the Range, located in Hibbing and operated by AEOA. Home on the Range opened in June 2023 with room for 28 individuals. Remodeling on the building is continuing and in 20204 when it is complete 54 people can be served and this will include rooms for families with children.

Here are a few snapshots.

To provide prevention/assistance, emergency, permanent supportive, and transitional housing, St. Louis County applied for and coordinates over $7.9 million through competitive state and federal funding to support local community organizations.

Our Housing Support program continues to expand, providing housing and supportive services for people who have experienced long-term homelessness (LTH). We currently have 331 community-based beds.

The SLC Racial Equity Accountability Project (REAP) Leadership team is composed of people with lived experience from BIPOC and LGBTQIA2S+ communities across SLC working to address the inequities in our housing and homelessness continuum. REAP is working with our HUD funded partners to increase cultural responsiveness, equity, and inclusion of input from people with lived experience in their rapid-rehousing, transitional housing and permanent supportive housing projects.

In the 2022-2023 winter season, over 600 people sought shelter. The bed capacity at CHUM is at 78 with the average number of guests being 98 people on a given night. The warming center (in addition to Chum’s 24/7 drop-in space) has been averaging at least 70 individuals this winter season. July 1, 2022–June 30, 2023, AEOA in northern SLC served 273 individuals, and they turned away 981 individuals due to being at capacity.

1,051 Professional statements of need (PSN) were completed to assist individuals in accessing Housing Supports and LTH Housing.

In the 2022-2023 winter season: Shelter units have been expanded through great partnerships in northern SLC. Home on the Range shelter in Hibbing has opened. It has 56 beds, including units specifically for families and people fleeing DV. There is also a four-plex shelter/transitional housing unit being built in Virginia by Range Transitional Housing (RTH) that will have services provided by AEOA.

Supporting Homeless Youth

We are working with partners and stakeholders across sectors and PHHS divisions to address youth homelessness. Components of this work include, but are not limited to:

Revamp our coordinated entry system assessment and access points (for all humans facing homelessness and housing instability).

Work on a Direct Cash Transfer pilot project that will be designed by young people with lived experience with a research component that could provide a new pathway out of homelessness.

Coordinate Local Homeless Prevention Aid (LHPA) funds with community partners to prevent young people and families from experiencing homelessness and housing instability.

The St. Louis County Housing Collective

The St. Louis County Housing Collective is based in relationships to co-create and implement a unified, holistic, human-centered and action-oriented strategic plan where everyone has a place to call home. We will work together to achieve deep equity and justice in housing, health, and racial and cultural healing across St. Louis County.

The SLC Housing Collective hosted a World Café to start hearing what this looks like in St. Louis County. This was followed by a Symposium to capture all the amazing work happening, as well as identify where to build and what we’re missing. From here, we are creating action plans with clear communication loops and follow up. Stay tuned and plug in!

Click image to enlarge images below

Public Health and Human Services depends on, and is grateful for the support of:

  • Our outstanding, creative, and committed staff.
  • The Public Health and Human Services Advisory Committee and other advisory committees and community coalitions.
  • The dedicated community partners throughout our county.
  • Carlton-Cook-Lake-St. Louis Community Health Board.
  • The St. Louis County Board.

Child Safety

We work to ensure safety for children, with consideration for both physical and emotional safety. We view children’s families, supports, and communities as integral to ensuring their safety.

Family Preservation

Out-of-Home Placement occurs only after all other options are exhausted. We work to keep children at home with their families whenever possible. We provide and/or refer to services designed to help families alleviate the underlying causes that lead to abuse and/or neglect of children, and children being removed from their homes. When placement is necessary, we prioritize placing children with extended family or people with whom they have an existing relationship. We strive to provide the least restrictive placement possible.

Family Centered Collaboration

We value the wisdom of families and come alongside them when navigating through obstacles or challenges. We encourage families and their supports to share leadership in the decision-making process and collaborate to create a safe family environment. Children’s voices are vital to our collaborative efforts.


We partner with families, tribes, support networks, and community supports to assess and identify protective factors and strengths in conjunction with risks in order to create solutions that maximize child safety and well-being.

Culturally Responsive

We respect and honor the languages, cultures, and life experiences of the diverse individuals we serve. We actively support children’s connections to their culture through culturally appropriate services, resources, and placement options.

Child Well-being

We carefully assess the well-being, best interests, safety and needs of children and families to make the most informed decisions about services and supports. We acknowledge the risk and trauma associated with placing children out of their homes and are diligent in weighing the potential risks of removal when a placement is considered. In all service delivery and placement procedures, we are committed to connecting children and families with appropriate services that best meet their physical, emotional, cultural, and well-being needs.

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