The Department of Community and Public Relations coordinates outreach and engagement activities throughout the community. It is comprised of the Community Services and Homeless Services Divisions and the Public Information Office. Collaboratively the Department connects residents with services, engages residents in educational and volunteer initiatives, communicates and promotes City events and activities, and fosters collaboration and involvement. Coordination of the City’s involvement in Census 2020 is also coordinated by this Department.
- Community Services implements and supports programs that encompass interim case management, community outreach and education, housing counseling, financial wellness, school support and parental engagement, emergency assistance and safety net services, and resources and referrals to City residents in need. The Community Services Division has access to a large network of agencies and organizations to which City residents can be referred for assistance.
- Homeless Services is responsible for homeless advocacy, community education on homelessness, outreach services, housing, and linking homeless individuals to needed services. The Homeless Services Division has a two-man street outreach team that helps locate and assist homeless individuals. The Division oversees the operation of the Wells/Robertson House, a transitional program for men and women in recovery from substance use disorder, and DeSellum House, which offers transitional housing to select graduates of the Wells/Robertson program. To report homelessness please call 301-258-6390.
- The Public Information Office informs citizens about their City government and its programs using various forms of communication, including news releases, newsletters, informational brochures, City publications, digital signage, the website, social media outlets, municipal cable television, and outside advertising. The Public Information office also coordinates the marketing of City facilities.
- The City is in compliance with FAA rules that allow local governments to operate small Unmanned Aircraft Systems ("sUAS" or "Drones"). FAA-Certified staff pilots within the Public Information Office capture images for marketing and advertising, virtual park tours, GIS mapping, planning analysis and review, and public building and facility inspections. Use of a City drone for code and law enforcement purposes is prohibited by City policy, and a Good Neighbor Policy is also in place to respect an expectation of privacy by our residents. See the Documents Box on this page for policy and procedure manuals.