The Chicago Continuum of Care Charter

What is the CoC Charter?

The Chicago Continuum of Care (CoC) is a membership organization comprised of more than 100 organizations and individuals who work to prevent and end homelessness in Chicago. Mandated by the U.S Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), the CoC strategizes and plans a coordinated, comprehensive approach to providing housing and services for people experiencing homelessness. The Governance and Structure of Chicago’s CoC is outlined in its Charter

In 2020, the Board Affairs Committee, a subcommittee of the Chicago Contiuum of Care (CoC) Board, formed a Charter Review Committee for the purpose of revising the CoC Governance Charter.

The Charter Review Committee’s primary intent was to have the Charter accurately address the current state of the Chicago CoC while proposing certain refinements and clarifications. After months of discussions and deliberations, the Charter Review Committee is presenting this draft Governance Charter for community review and feedback.

How can I submit feedback on the new Charter?

Please submit feedback on the charter using this survey by Friday, September 25, 2020.

While the Committee retained much of the structure and language from the original document, here is a summary of the key changes to the Charter: 

    • We streamlined the document, reducing its size by about 20%.
    • We consolidated all key terminology in the first section of the document.
    • We eliminated all references to specific organizations (such as All Chicago and the Department of Family and Support Services (DFSS)) and replaced them with roles, such as Collaborative Applicant or Emergency Solutions Grant (ESG) Recipient.
    • We added the Youth Action Board (YAB) to the document, and the YAB has 1 seat on the Board.
    • We replaced the language regarding the Plan to End Homelessness with “strategic implementation plan”.
    • We added a section regarding Diversity and Equity.
    • The current charter requires CoC members to register for an All-CoC meeting 14 days in advance in order to vote. The new Charter reduces this time to 3 days.
    • We clarified the 1 vote per organization rule and stipulated that Lived Experience Commission (LEC) members can vote even if they are affiliated with an organization.
    • We added the concept of “delegate”. A delegate is a substitute for a regular Board Director who can be a nonvoting participant at Board meetings and can serve on Board committees.
    • The CEO of the Collaborative Applicant will be a nonvoting member of the Board.
    • Board officers can now serve up to two years.
    • We clarified that the Board Chair rotation would be as follows: ESG Recipient, Other Stakeholder, LEC, and Service Provider.
    • We retained the four standing Board Committees: Executive, Finance, Board Affairs and System Operations and Performance. We updated and clarified the roles of the committees.
    • We unified the membership rules for each standing Committee and allowed for non-Board members to be members of the Committees.
    • We reestablished the Membership Committee as a subcommittee of the Board Affairs Committee and clarified that the Collaborative Applicant Committee would be a subcommittee of the System Operations and Performance Committee (SOPC).
    • We rewrote the “Action Agenda” (now called the Implementation Structure) section, to reflect the current state of operations more accurately. We also added communication guidelines for the lines of action.
    • We consolidated and unified the procedures for lead agency governance.
    • We consolidated and unified the grievance and appeals process.

All Chicago hosted a webinar reviewing the proposed Charter revisions on Wednesday, September 9 at 1:00 pm. A recording of this webinar can be found here.

Questions about the Charter?

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