Letters to the Editor: Is Rick Caruso’s ‘short-term’ homelessness plan what L.A. needs?
There’s been a lot of discussion recently in the Bay Area about what the “short-term” homeless movement in L.A. and the wider country should look like. While the question of what homelessness does to a person’s character is complex and perhaps not for the average person to answer, the issue of whether or not a person’s right to a roof over their head should be contingent on their income, has to be a basic one. We, at The Los Angeles Times, believe that anyone who is homeless in our city, no matter the length of time, has the right to shelter and safety.
It’s clear that we don’t have enough housing. There are tens of thousands people (and counting) who have no place to live. We have a problem that can’t be solved on a political level, so we’ve turned to local elected officials to solve it for us.
Our local elected officials are the only people who can create the housing that we need. What we need now is a housing plan that includes the following: affordable housing, security, food and a place to live that allows time for community and family to develop.
L.A.’s housing crisis is not a problem to be solved in the next election cycle.
Our political system is broken when it comes to addressing and solving our housing needs. It needs reform through the ballot box — in this case at city council.
I’m a lifelong resident of L.A. County and I’ve lived in the county my whole life. I’ve seen a lot of changes over these past decade and more, and I’ve seen homelessness become more and more a regular occurrence on our streets and in our parks.
I’ve seen homeless camps that have grown exponentially over the past six years (not to mention the hundreds of thousands of people living inside).
I’ve heard of individuals getting on the streets after receiving food baskets. I’ve heard of entire families and the children being torn from their families by children who are not able to take care of themselves. I’ve seen entire families being separated from the people that they love. I’ve seen a culture of violence that allows young men to take part in the cycle of homelessness by selling drugs and driving fast cars, and then turn around and beat the people that they’ve sold drugs to.
I’ve seen the people in these camps