California’s Battle Against Homelessness: $17.5 Billion Spent, No End In Sight

Posted in: Andy Oxide, MPN, News, Updates


Los Angeles, California:

In a startling revelation, California’s expenditure of a staggering $17.5 billion over a four-year period to combat homelessness has failed to curb the crisis.

Contrary to expectations, the state’s homeless population continued to grow between 2018 and 2022, with half of all Americans living on the streets residing in California, as per federal data.

While homelessness is on the rise nationwide, California is adding more homeless individuals each year than any other state, with over 170,000 unhoused people struggling to find shelter.

Despite the substantial investment, the state could have hypothetically covered the rent for every unhoused person in California during those four years, even considering the state’s high housing costs.

However, even if California were to pursue such a strategy, the lack of affordable housing remains a major roadblock.

“We need 2.5 million more units in California,” acknowledged Jason Elliott, senior adviser on homelessness to Governor Gavin Newsom.

He further emphasized that the state’s housing crisis stems from decades of policy choices made by both Republicans and Democrats.

To address the issue, a total of $20.6 billion has been allocated until 2024 for combating homelessness.

Local governments received nearly $4 billion to fund anti-homelessness initiatives, while $3.7 billion was directed to a program called Project Homekey, which acquires properties like motels and commercial buildings to convert them into permanent, affordable housing.

So far, 13,500 units have been completed, but Elliott acknowledges that more needs to be done to reverse the rising trend.

A lot more.

However, the battle against homelessness cannot be won solely by burning through mountains of cash.

While 66% of respondents in a survey reported symptoms of mental health conditions, Dr. Margot Kushel, who led the survey, questions whether mental health problems cause homelessness or if it is the other way around.

The Newsom administration recognizes the complexity of the issue and has prioritized mental health in its efforts to tackle homelessness.

The state’s new approach includes the controversial option of court-ordered treatment programs for individuals requiring mental health support.

Nevertheless, Kushel asserts that addressing mental health alone cannot solve the problem when the median rent for a two-bedroom apartment is $2,200.

The dire need for 2.5 million more homes by 2030 emphasizes the importance of local governments making housing and zoning decisions that favor affordable housing.

Despite the substantial efforts by the Newsom administration, California requires federal assistance to provide guaranteed housing, just like food stamps, healthcare, and public education.

Elliott underscores the urgent need for federal intervention, as the current availability of housing vouchers falls significantly short of the demand.

Dr. Kushel’s report and recommendations have been received positively by state officials, signaling a willingness to address the crisis.

However, differing viewpoints exist, with some politicians prioritizing temporary solutions, such as shelters and motels, rather than focusing on permanent housing options.

In Los Angeles, Mayor Karen Bass launched the Inside Safe program to clear street encampments and has successfully moved over 1,300 people into motels.

However, the transition to permanent housing remains uncertain.

The city’s budget for 2023-2024 allocates $250 million for Inside Safe, with a portion designated for temporary motels and $21 million intended for permanent housing.

As the state continues its fight against homelessness, the challenges persist as thousands of people are still left with nowhere to live and no viable means of escaping their cycle of poverty.

While substantial investments have been made, the critical shortage of affordable housing remains a fundamental obstacle even with billons of dollars thrown at the problem.

Only time will tell if California’s seemingly endless battle against homelessness is a winnable war with the current strategy.

Read the original article here:

Sign Up Below To Get Daily Patriot Updates & Connect With Patriots From Around The Globe

Let Us Unite As A  Patriots Network!




California Gavin Newsom homeless

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *