California’s homeless population has jumped over 12 percent in the last five years as part of a national crisis sweeping the nation.
Los Angeles has the largest unsheltered homeless population in America, according to Reason.com. Yet they have “failed to deal with what’s become a public health and humanitarian crisis,” the outlet reports. “More than 1,000 homeless people died on the streets of Los Angeles County last year, according to government figures.”
A 2016 referendum in the city to address the issue with new housing for the homeless –to the tune of $1.2 billion dollars–appears to be filing. The goal to add 10,000 new housing units within a decade has fallen short, as just one percent of the proposed apartments will be ready for occupancy by the end of 2019.
Reason reports that delays in the project have been attributed to cost overruns “largely to regulatory barriers, permitting challenges, and bureaucratic confusion.” The existing shelters, meanwhile, are running out of space.
Los Angeles’ project, known as “Housing First,” was based on a “successful” project in Utah. They gave permanent apartments out “with no strings attached,” and were reported to have reduced chronic homelessness by 91 percent.
“But state auditors later attributed those findings to a data collection error. Utahns don’t actually know how their homeless population has changed over the years, or what effect various homelessness programs have had on Utah’s homeless population,” Reason reported.
The Trump Administration intends to appoint Robert Marbut as new executive director of the U.S. Interagency Council on Homelessness. The choice is controversial because Marbut’s strategies include requiring good behavior for services and housing. Homeless advocates prefer to use taxpayer money for more “proven strategies,” like permanent and affordable housing.
A new documentary reveals how some people experiencing homelessness are living, why some continue to be homeless, and solutions for the problem that are working. Moving through multiple cities, the film explores various programs and how they affect real people.
Streaming on Amazon and available for purchase on DVD (see options below), “United States of Tents” will shock and inspire. As you watch, reflect on the solutions which are offering the most hope and progress. Is Los Angeles falling short?
PLEASE WATCH a powerful preview clip below:
“United States of Tents” is now available on DVD for purchase, and bundle offers are available. Whether you order just one DVD or multiple at a discount, we STRONGLY ENCOURAGE you to share the DVD with others.
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