The most recent homelessness count found 57,794 people in LA County who do not have homes. Some are in shelters, some live in cars, and many are sleeping on the streets. It’s a big number, up 23 percent since last year’s count.
A breakdown by LAHSA shows that the number of youth who are homeless increased by 61 percent. The number of veterans went up by 57 percent.
The growth comes at a time when people want to help. Homelessness is one of the most important issues for Angelenos, according to a poll from 2016. Voters in LA approved both Measure HHH, a bond to build housing for the homeless; and Measure H, which raised the sales tax to pay for homelessness services.
There are scores of homeless service providers around LA County that are also trying to keep up with demand.
So what can you do?
There are many ways to help. You can volunteer your time, donate money, stay active in your community and get to know those who are experiencing homelessness.
Here’s more on how to help from the Union Rescue Mission:
“Take time to meet, talk to, and get to know men, women, and children who are experiencing homelessness. Hear their stories, understand their struggles, and put a human face on this issue.” (More here).
There are organizations all over Los Angeles, if you’re looking to get more involved. Here are just some of them:
Do you have stories about the high cost of living in Los Angeles? Share it in our There Goes the Neighborhood Facebook group.
Photo: Charlie Llewellin