12% Rise in Los Angeles Homelessness
The findings of a new study have showed that 12% rise has been witnessed in Los Angeles County's homeless population during the past two years. Economic recovery has been sluggish during the same time. Surge in homeless population has been attributed by the Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority's report to declining wages among the lowest-income earners, a local jobless rate that remains above state and national averages, and a worsening lack of affordable housing.
Peter Lynn, authority's executive director, said improvements have come for the economy, but it has provided no respite to the people at the highest risk of homelessness. An estimated 44,300 people are living on the streets in cars, in abandoned buildings or in shelters and government-funded "transitional housing on any given night in Los Angeles County. The figure was obtained from the agency's latest biennial count.
The numbers have increased by 12% than the previous survey in 2013. The jump was similar for the city of Los Angeles proper, home to a notorious downtown Skid Row district known to have one of the largest numbers of homeless in the United States. The city alone has more than a third of the country's total number of homeless people.
"California was one of the hardest hit states in the country during the economic recession, suffering high unemployment and high job losses. There is a lag in rebound and the working poor and low-income individuals have been hit particularly hard", the housing authority said in a release.
Studies have showed that some of the highest rents in the nation are in Southern California. An estimated 1.5 million households lack access to affordable housing throughout California.
Mayor Eric Garcetti said that the issue of homelessness is the matter of paramount importance for him that he is trying hard to end in near future.