Google on Thursday unveiled its plan to give San Francisco's homeless lifelong phone numbers and voice mail.
Google through its Grand Central telephony service and Mayor Gavin Newsom's project Homeless Connect (PHC) launched the social program on Thursday at the bill Graham Civic Auditorium in San Francisco, together with a California Pacific Medical Center initiative to provide homeless women with mammograms.
Providing phone and messaging capabilities and access to vital health care is an extraordinary step forward in the city's commitment to a comprehensive approach to addressing the needs of this vulnerable community, said Newsom.
Newsom added that housing the homeless residents remains his top priority and that providing these services will improve their quality of life and empower them to be more self-sufficient.
PHC is an outreach program that was started in October 2004, to assist people in the transition from homelessness to housing and has expanded to more than 100 cities across the United States and other countries.
Homeless Grand Central users will have free phone numbers and voice mail that will allow them to record greetings and check messages from any phone.
Google together with the mayor's office plans to make the service available to all homeless people in San Francisco.
We are firm believers in the power of technology to improve the daily lives of individuals and communities as a whole, and we recognize that access to phone and voicemail services is one way that Google can help San Francisco's homeless stay connected with families, friends, social workers, health care providers and potential employers, said Craig Walker, senior product manager of voice products for Google.