Should Los Angeles continue to direct most resources toward creating permanent housing with services? Or should it try to rapidly add more group shelters and shared tiny homes which would allow the city to enforce camping bans in certain areas? There are compelling arguments for both approaches.
The United States pledged in 2009 to end veteran homelessness. The numbers have fallen by nearly half since then, but there are still more than 37,000 veterans living in their cars, in temporary shelters, or in makeshift camps. Researchers followed 26 of them for one year to see how they live and what keeps them on the streets.
Vaccine rollouts, an attack on the U.S. Capitol, massive ransomware attacks, the withdrawal from Afghanistan, record numbers of job openings and people quitting, and more. RAND researchers weighed in on all these topics and more.
An estimated 3,900 veterans live unhoused in Los Angeles. The city has the largest VA medical center in the nation. There are federal housing programs exclusively for veterans. So why hasn't Los Angeles been able to make a dent?
Around one-fifth of people experiencing homelessness have a severe mental health disorder. Almost as many have a substance-use disorder. Police need better policies and community partnerships to help make their response to homelessness safer, more humane, and more effective.
Unaccompanied homeless women are more likely than other subgroups to be chronically homeless, to have mental illness, and to have work limitations. Los Angeles County is now recognizing these women as a subgroup in the official homeless count. An assessment will also be conducted to identify this group's unique needs.
The vast majority of people experiencing homelessness have cell phones, which often serve as their lifelines. Providing technological supports, such as Wi-Fi access and opportunities to charge devices, could result in better access to social services and, ultimately, better quality of life and outcomes.
The pandemic has led to an estimated 175,000 business closures this spring. And an estimated 40 percent of employed people are working from home full-time. This could be a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to reallocate portions of the built environment toward the urgent demand for affordable housing.
Children in Europe are at a higher risk of poor-quality and overcrowded housing. Efforts to improve the quality of children's living environments could be key to mitigating the effects of the COVID-19 outbreak on children and their households.
Without assistance, domestic violence survivors are more likely to be forced into homelessness. Now could be the time to invest in programs that help victims—before a second wave of COVID-19 cases pushes more families into unsafe environments.
Housing security is vital to individual and collective well-being. It's also a key component in the nation's economic performance. The looming coronavirus eviction crisis suggests the need to address the systemic problem of housing affordability and security now.
The recently passed $2 trillion stimulus package includes a suite of measures designed to support households that are affected by the COVID-19 outbreak. But policymakers may want to consider what protections the package offers to a particularly high-risk group: people experiencing homelessness.
Los Angeles County has moved some of its most chronically homeless and vulnerable residents into permanent housing. Providing them with social services and health care has dramatically reduced their use of emergency rooms and other services, saving taxpayers millions of dollars.
Los Angeles County's Housing for Health program addresses an important public health issue by providing housing and supportive services to some of the most vulnerable people in our community. The program also saves taxpayers money.