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Homelessness Through the Lens of Social Justice

This webcast series will help you see your work to end homelessness through the lens of social justice and equality. We will explore critical topics that face every community-racial equality, LGBTQ rights, access to health care, and social connectedness. Each webcast will build on ideas explored in t3's popular podcasts, Changing the Conversation. Hosted by Jeff Olivet, CEO of the Center for Social Innovation and a leading voice on race and homelessness, the webcasts will include guest speakers from some of the nation's leading experts. Guest include Dr. Jim O'Connell, Dr. Jama Shelton, Marc Dones, Mark Horvath, Barbara DiPietro, and Livia Davis. 

All webcasts will be on Tuesdays at 12:00 pm ET. Dates and titles of each webcast is below:

  • February 2: Homelessness as a Social Justice Issue 
  • February 9: LGBTQ Homelessness with Dr. Jama Shelton and Marc Dones
  • February 16: There is No Us/Them...Just Us-Promoting Social Inclusion with Livia Davis and Mark Horvath
  • February 23: Racism and Homelessness with Marc Dones
  • March 1: Healthcare is a Basic Human Right with Dr. Jim O'Connell and Barbara DiPietro


About the presenters

Jeff Olivet is the President/CEO of the Boston-based Center for Social Innovation. For more than two decades, Jeff has been a national leader on homelessness, poverty, affordable housing, behavioral health, public health, and HIV. During his health and human services career, he has been a street outreach worker, case manager, housing director, coalition builder, writer, teacher, and activist. His work with hundreds of organizations across the United States and internationally has helped to improve strategic planning, organizational management, and implementation of evidence-based practices. Jeff is recognized as an expert in bringing innovative technologies and solutions to complex social problems.

Jama Shelton, PhD is the Deputy Executive Director of the True Colors Fund. In this role, Dr. Shelton is engaged in systemic change efforts directly informed by years of direct practice experience. Having worked in the areas of clinical practice with LGBT youth experiencing homelessness, as well as program development, evaluation, research, technical assistance and training, Dr. Shelton brings a comprehensive understanding of the issues facing both LGBT youth experiencing homelessness and also the service providers with whom they work.

Marc Dones is a graduate of New York University’s Gallatin School, with a concentration in psychiatric anthropology. Prior to joining C4, Marc worked as a policy analyst, program assistant, and program manager in the Massachusetts Executive Office of Health and Human Services, where he focused on youth violence prevention and reduction, LGBTQ populations, as well as systemic responses to youth homelessness. 

Mark Horvath is the founder of Invisible People, a unique digital storytelling organization that uses video and social media to change the story of homelessness and give a voice to those who are too often overlooked.

Livia Davis has 15 years of experience as a direct service provider in behavioral health, housing, and homeless services. She leads C4’s Behavioral Health & Recovery division, where she directs SAMHSA’s BRSS TACS initiative to bring recovery-oriented best practices and programs to scale nationally. She is a Certified Social Work Manager and a Certified Life Coach. 

Barbara DiPietro directs the policy and advocacy activities for the National Health Care for the Homeless Council, conducts policy analysis, coordinates the Council’s policy priorities with federal advocacy and governmental partners, and organizes staff assistance to the Policy Committee, Respite Care Providers Network, National Consumer Advisory Board, SSI Task Force, and the Permanent Supportive Housing Working Group.

Dr. Jim O'Connell is the founding physician of the Boston Health Care for the Homeless Program, which now serves over 12,000 homeless persons each year in two hospital-based clinics (Boston Medical Center and MGH) and in more than 60 shelters and outreach sites in Boston. Dr. O'Connell has contributed in making many firsts in healthcare for people experiencing homeless including the first medical respite program and the first computerized medical record specifically for homeless programs.