Los Angeles, CA—A delegation from Trump’s administration met with officials from Mayor Eric Garcetti’s office Tuesday, over the ballooning homeless crisis in Los Angeles.
Trump aides were given a tour of downtown L.A’s skid-row, a homeless encampment that encompasses several city blocks. Around the area, there are various homeless shelters, apartment complexes for the homeless, as well as services such as free laundry and food. Still, the homeless crisis on skidrow does not seem to be reducing in size. Beyond skidrow, homelessness has increased in the county of Los Angeles by 16% in the last year alone.
“The mayor’s staff gave Trump Administration officials a tour of the city’s unified homelessness response center, the Jordan Downs public housing complex that is undergoing redevelopment, prefabricated Flyaway Homes, and an emergency shelter in South Los Angeles,” (DailyMail).
Many point to the rising cost of housing and wages that are not sustainable for the current housing market. In Los Angeles in particular, the cost of housing continues to be a huge issue, despite hundreds of construction projects and housing complexes springing up around the city.
One of the biggest aspects of homelessness not getting much attention, are the racial disparities of the homeless population in Los Angeles. Black people make up 40% of the homeless population in L.A, despite representing only about 8% of the overall population.
These statistics are pulled directly from the Los Angeles Homeless Service Authority (LAHSA) subcommittee report on Black Homelessness in L.A:
“A theme that cut across the Committee’s work was the acknowledgement that racism has contributed to, and remains intertwined with, homelessness. As such, ending homelessness will require a collective commitment to dismantling racism and addressing racial disparities, and sustained support from funders, policymakers, mainstream systems of care, service providers, and community partners,” the committee details in their report.
South Central, which is one of America’s most famous ghetto’s, sits just 5 miles South of skidrow. A lot of the Black community that once comprised South Central, may very well be wandering the streets of skid row currently.
Since the 1980’s crack epidemic that decimated Black communities across the U.S, not nearly enough has been done to reinvest into the people, South Central included.
Generations of wealth hindered, families broken and crack babies in the system left the fiend for themselves, is what the community was left with. Now, gentrifiers are buying up the depressed property value right from under our feet, while the poor Black community of L.A is left roaming the streets.
To stop the rapid rise of homelessness in Los Angeles, many believe there needs to be a huge shift of power and reelections of city seats. For too long, it appears Los Angeles politicians have allowed business interests drive them, while residents continue to be driven out.