The Human Services Department strengthens our community by protecting the vulnerable, promoting self-sufficiency, alleviating poverty and improving the quality of life of all county residents.

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Human Services Department Staff Excel in MSW Internship Program! 

We value the importance of professional development, and participate in the Masters of Social Work (MSW) Internship Program to support current staff who are seeking a MSW degree with a qualifying California graduate school of social work. This year we saw 6 Human Services Department staff either complete their internships toward earning their MSW, or graduate from the program, earning their MSW, and we couldn’t be prouder! Congratulations to all the field instructors, interns and graduates in the program!

Veterans Service Office & Help LGBTQ+ Veterans With Federal Pardon

VeteranThe Veterans Service Office is here to support LGBTQ+ Veterans forced out of the military and subject to a court-martial because of their sexual orientation or gender identity, to apply for the recent Presidential Pardon issued on June 26, 2024.

Workforce Development Board Releases 2024 State of the Workforce Report

The 2024 State of the Workforce report by the Santa Cruz County Workforce Development Board (WDB) highlights economic progress, new opportunities, and the challenges faced by the local workforce. Learn more:

June 15 is World Elder Abuse Awareness Day

 Saturday, June 15, the County's government services center at 701 Ocean Street in Santa Cruz was lit up in purple lights to commemorate World Elder Abuse Awareness Day for the County of Santa Cruz, as part of a larger effort to is raise awareness that elder abuse can happen to anyone, and local resources are available to help. Learn more:

Ride the METRO Route 78 Bus to the New South County Government Services Center, Fare Free!

 The County of Santa Cruz Human Services Department has partnered with METRO to provide route 78, FARE-FREE, to and from 500 Westridge Drive, the new South County Government Services Center in Watsonville. Route 78 is now operating and will be free to ride for all people accessing services, until June of 2025!
To access Route 78 schedules and timing, CLICK HERE.

South County Government Services Center, Officially Open!


Human Services Department Staff Graduate Bay Area Social Services Consortium’s 2024 Executive Development Program!

Professional development is a cornerstone of HSD’s staff training opportunities, as professional development ultimately improves our customer service. Congratulations to HSD Senior Analysts Sara Harb and Elizabeth Byrd for completing this intensive program, and gaining skills and insights about meaningful change that will help our department better serve our community. CLICK HERE to learn about the Bay Area Social Services Consortium.

County Releases CORE Investments RFP for Funding Cycle 2025-2028 on June 3, 2024

County Human Services Department's Watsonville Offices Have Moved

No longer at its former 18 West Beach Street location, on Monday, May 20, 2024, the County’s Human Services Department began providing its full array of in-person services from the new South County Government Services Center at 500 Westridge Drive in Watsonville. The new Services Center in Watsonville is now open to the public from 8 AM to 5 PM Monday through Friday for in-person employment services, public benefits assistance, and other social services supports. The public may also access the 1-888-421-8080 phone lines for benefits inquiries, and the Human Services Department offices on Emeline Avenue in Santa Cruz will remain open for North County residents.

County Board of Supervisors and Santa Cruz City Council Approve CORE Investments RFP for Funding Cycle 2025-2028

April 2024 - Child Abuse Prevention Awareness Month

“The County of Santa Cruz is committed to advancing policies and practices that prioritize the well-being of all our county’s children and families. Every family and child deserve supports to help them thrive, feel purposeful and have hope for the future. I encourage our community to join in our efforts this month and become partners in child abuse prevention.” Gloria Carroll, Division Director of the Human Services Department’s Family and Children's Services Division

  • Read the County's Press Release about child abuse prevention month, HERE
  • Watch this HIGHLIGHTS VIDEO from our Children's Memorial Flag Raising event on April 26, 2024
  • READ newspaper coverage of our April 2024 partnership efforts on child abuse prevention

 Housing for Health Partnership Secures Additional Funding

More than $9 million in federal and State Homekey Program funds have been awarded to support permanent supportive housing projects, rental subsidies and youth transitional housing across Santa Cruz County.

SCHOLARSHIP ALERT! Apply for a Path to Success Scholarship!

You may be eligible for one of 32 available scholarships, worth $4,500 each! These scholarships, offered in partnership between Workforce Santa Cruz County and Cabrillo College, will allow a diverse range of Cabrillo College students to enroll in an exciting certificated program in a high-demand field. For more information:

NEW! Medi-Cal for All Expansion of Coverage!

Effective January 1st, 2024, Medi-Cal citizenship requirements have been eliminated to allow more Californians to qualify for full coverage. Adults ages 26 through 49 can now qualify for full scope Medi-Cal, regardless of immigration status (all other Medi-Cal eligibility rules, including income limits, still apply). More Information:

NEW! Enhanced Security for EBT Card Holders

EBT Cardholders now have a new tool to better protect your account and benefits — the new “ebtEDGE”! This mobile app and cardholder portal gives EBT users new security features:

  • Manage/change your PIN whenever and as often as needed
  • Card “freeze/unfreeze” to lock and unlock card access as needed
  • Transaction blocking for out-of-state use or for internet purchases
  • Request a replacement if your card is compromised, damaged, lost, or stolen
  • Biometrics access with touch ID or facial recognition to securely log in

The ebtEDGE mobile application is available and ready to download! Go to the Apple App Store for iPhone or the Google Play Store for Android devices and download the application today! Need more info? Download this flyer or visit for more information in English and Spanish.

County Holiday Observances

Please view 2024 County Holiday Schedule Here.

Emergency Preparedness, Response, and Recovery Resources

  • Check the forecast regularly at the National Weather Service report for Santa Cruz County to stay informed on weather conditions.
  • Sign up for CodeRed at and download the CodeRed app for your phone.
  • Santa Cruz County, disaster preparedness/recovery resources related advice to prepare for potential disaster events Santa Cruz County Office of Response, Recovery & Resilience
  • Most importantly, you should always have an emergency kit, including food, water, and a plan! Emergency disasters can disrupt power, transportation, and other lifelines. Find more preparedness tips Here.
  • If told to evacuate, please do so immediately. Find your zone through ZoneHaven-Aware.

Latest News Archives

To find older editions of our 'Latest News' bulletins, please review the Latest News Archives.