SEVERE WX : High Wind Warning - Wind Advisory View Alerts

Homeless Californians join in a lawsuit to mandate Los Angeles provide shelter for thousands

An alliance of both housed and homeless people has filed a lawsuit against Los Angeles to order thousands of beds be provided for the unsheltered.The...

Posted: Mar 12, 2020 5:06 AM

An alliance of both housed and homeless people has filed a lawsuit against Los Angeles to order thousands of beds be provided for the unsheltered.

The complaint filed Tuesday by the LA Alliance for Human Rights accuses the city of neglecting its responsibilities and investing resources in approaches that are too slow to address the homelessness problem in Los Angeles. The suit hopes to mandate that the city and county provide services for the homeless population including training, healthcare and shelter in a faster time frame.

"We really are looking to catalyze change on a systemic level," said Elizabeth Mitchell, an attorney who filed the suit on behalf of the LA Alliance for Human Rights. "We are not looking to get rich. We are not looking for money. We really are looking for change."

Los Angeles City Attorney Mike Feuer's office said it is reviewing the lawsuit and does not have a comment at this time.

Despite major investment in combating the crisis, the homeless population in Los Angeles County increased to almost 60,000 people in 2019, the Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority said in a June report.

And about 75% of those people are unsheltered, according to the complaint. In comparison, New York City -- which has a right to shelter -- has an unsheltered rate of 5%, Mitchell said.

"Officials in both the County and City have gone to great lengths in the last couple years to address this crisis, and their efforts are impressive and commendable; yet much more needs to be done," the suit says.

The problem, Mitchell said, is that Los Angeles City and County are investing in expensive programs like permanent housing, but with three people dying of the homelessness crisis per day the problem is outpacing their solutions.

To reach an additional 22,000 beds in a matter of months, the suit suggests that the city and county work together to explore options like shared housing, tiny houses, 3D printed homes and "other financially feasible options that enable rapid sheltering along with wrap-around services to empower those experiencing homelessness to reintegrate with their communities," Mitchell said in a press release.

The suit began as a grassroots effort. Downtown residents formed the LA Alliance for Human Rights last summer in response to the suffering around them and in hopes of finding new ways to "break through the barriers," the release said.

Instead of fighting through bureaucracies, the movement turned to the courts -- a system that could move more quickly and provide outside accountability, Mitchell said.

Speed is important in an issue that has economic, environmental and criminal impacts on the area, but Mitchell said everyone involved is concerned about the issue from a humanitarian perspective.

"Whether a person is on the streets of their own accord or because they lost their jobs, people can still say this shouldn't be the case and we shouldn't be leaving our people in the streets," Mitchell said.

Oregon Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 156287

Reported Deaths: 2252
CountyCasesDeaths
Multnomah31935542
Washington21311212
Marion18541285
Clackamas13426183
Lane10325129
Jackson8489114
Umatilla767882
Deschutes597561
Yamhill379168
Linn360157
Malheur335358
Polk307343
Klamath279855
Douglas252755
Josephine236553
Benton234817
Jefferson196628
Coos152420
Union129519
Columbia127421
Wasco122126
Lincoln113620
Hood River106929
Morrow104914
Clatsop7776
Crook77618
Baker6639
Curry4296
Tillamook4212
Lake3786
Harney2776
Grant2251
Wallowa1425
Gilliam541
Sherman530
Wheeler221
Unassigned00

California Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 3582320

Reported Deaths: 53083
CountyCasesDeaths
Los Angeles119601721676
Riverside2904983849
San Bernardino2870552959
Orange2617983966
San Diego2613533342
Santa Clara1110761798
Kern103756915
Fresno957851451
Sacramento937901498
Alameda809501271
Ventura77952870
San Joaquin671231150
Contra Costa62931695
Stanislaus56433953
Tulare48114768
Monterey42335329
San Mateo39148521
San Francisco34387422
Santa Barbara32147420
Solano30216165
Merced29264407
Sonoma28261301
Imperial26926638
Kings22091220
Placer19911232
San Luis Obispo19751238
Madera15523214
Santa Cruz14736183
Marin13285198
Yolo12867185
Shasta11054179
Butte11007167
El Dorado9195100
Napa908072
Sutter889998
Yuba577638
San Benito577061
Lassen562324
Tehama510452
Nevada398874
Tuolumne396659
Mendocino382643
Amador347441
Humboldt323033
Lake316941
Glenn223223
Colusa214013
Calaveras191849
Siskiyou178414
Inyo132137
Mono12144
Del Norte10085
Plumas6536
Modoc4604
Mariposa3957
Trinity3735
Sierra1000
Alpine820
Unassigned00
Medford
Clear
48° wxIcon
Hi: 64° Lo: 34°
Feels Like: 46°
Brookings
Partly Cloudy
52° wxIcon
Hi: 54° Lo: 39°
Feels Like: 52°
Medford
Partly Cloudy
48° wxIcon
Hi: 43° Lo: 22°
Feels Like: 46°
Medford
Partly Cloudy
48° wxIcon
Hi: 64° Lo: 32°
Feels Like: 46°
Klamath Falls
Partly Cloudy
46° wxIcon
Hi: 49° Lo: 30°
Feels Like: 39°
Strong south winds Thursday
KDRV Radar
KDRV Fire Danger
KDRV Weather Cam

Community Events