Last week I attended a Los Angeles City Council meeting with members of LA CAN. On the agenda was a vote on a proposed shelter for Korea Town. The president of the council Wesson allowed speakers on each side 25 minutes to state their case. The chambers were full and not everyone was allowed into the meeting.
Homeowners and people who live in Korea Town were divided about the shelter going into their area. The mayor’s A Bridge Home would put similar shelters in each of the city’s council districts. Never mentioned at this meeting was what will happen to the thousands of people who do not make it into one of these shelters.
Since the mayor is also putting over $20 million into increased police enforcement and sanitation workers, the belief is that this plan will start criminalizing homelessness, even though there is nowhere for the thousands left out of A Bridge Home to go.
LA CAN has started a petition for a forensic audit of how the HHH money is being spent. The fear is that some of the money designed to be used only for permanent housing is being used for other things such as increased sweeps.
The mayor and city council members owe it to the people of Los Angeles and especially the homeless, to tell their plans for the thousands left out of the mayor’s plan. We should also be asking why the shelters are only scheduled to exist for 3 years. With the price of housing, how can they expect homelessness to go away in a period of 3 years?
A Bridge Home seems very unrealistic given the number of homeless and the price of housing in the area. It is time we hold city council accountable and demand answers.