Apr 14

L.A. County rent assistance program could provide tenants up to $1,000 per month

  The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors on Tuesday unanimously approved the creation of an emergency rent assistance program for residents who are struggling amid the ongoing coronavirus crisis.   Once created, the program could provide up to $1,000 per month for three months to renters who lost income during the pandemic, according to a news release from Supervisor Janice Hahn’s office.   Though ...
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Apr 9

Affordable housing can cost $1 million per apartment in California. Coronavirus could make it worse

  SOLANA BEACH, Calif. —  When developer Ginger Hitzke first proposed an affordable housing complex on a parking lot in Solana Beach, she envisioned building 18 new homes for low-income families and adults at a cost of $414,000 per apartment. More than a decade later, her project has shrunk in size by nearly half and become more than twice as expensive.   At $1.1 million per ...
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Apr 8

Editorial: What every homeless person needs in this pandemic: a room of their own

  During the current COVID-19 pandemic, you can’t follow the order to stay at home if you have no home. Few communities are more imperiled by the coronavirus than the estimated 59,000 homeless individuals who bed down on sidewalks, in tents or in their vehicles in Los Angeles County.   As of Tuesday, 10 homeless people in the county tested positive for the ...
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Apr 6

HIV, Ebola, SARS and now COVID-19: Why some scientists fear deadly outbreaks are on the rise

  The social upheaval and death caused by the new coronavirus has awoken many to what some infectious-disease experts have been warning about for more than a decade: Outbreaks of dangerous new diseases with the potential to become pandemics have been on the rise — from HIV to swine flu to SARS to Ebola.   Many experts now believe that this surge in ...
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Apr 6

Once $400 a night, this Westside L.A. hotel is now for homeless people fleeing coronavirus

  They trickled in by taxi, chauffeured by van, on bicycle and on foot. Like guests in times not dominated by the coronavirus pandemic, they checked their bags, registered and received their room keys.   But it wasn’t the usual well-heeled crowd that arrived Monday afternoon at this West Los Angeles hotel, where rooms normally go for $389 a night. The guests were ...
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Apr 2

Coronavirus spreads in Los Angeles’ homeless community

There are nine confirmed cases of coronavirus among Los Angeles’ homeless population, said Barbara Ferrer, director of the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health, at her Thursday media briefing. This is up from five the day before and comes as the city and county attempt to more aggressively test in places like skid row. Ferrer said it was challenging to know exactly ...
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Mar 23

Salvation Army offers stores and camps as homeless shelters amid outbreak, but it’s a leap

  Just like for-profit businesses across California, the Salvation Army has taken a hit from the social distancing measures enacted to slow the spread of the coronavirus. On Wednesday, with foot traffic drained, the giant nonprofit best known for its Christmastime bell ringers shut down 17 thrift stores in Los Angeles County and 10 in Orange County. The next day, top brass from ...
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Mar 18

L.A. to add 6,000 shelter beds for homeless Angelenos in hopes of slowing virus’ spread

  Los Angeles will convert 42 of its recreation centers into temporary shelters for homeless residents, providing 6,000 new beds in an effort aimed at slowing the spread of the novel coronavirus, Mayor Eric Garcetti said Wednesday. The city is looking in the initiative’s first phase to open 1,600 shelter beds at 13 recreation centers by Monday, with beds provided by the ...
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Mar 17

To combat coronavirus, L.A. could let homeless people’s tents stay up all day

  Three members of the Los Angeles City Council called Tuesday for the city to temporarily stop enforcing a law requiring tents to come down during daytime hours, saying the change is needed to limit the spread of the novel coronavirus. Councilmen Mike Bonin, Marqueece Harris-Dawson and Gil Cedillo said the city must “urgently reevaluate” its policies for dealing with homeless encampments ...
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Mar 15

An unexpected side effect of the coronavirus? A new urgency about helping homeless people

  As public health officials scramble to manage the spread of the novel coronavirus, strategies are starting to be implemented across California and the rest of the country to protect the homeless population. On Sunday, Gov. Gavin Newsom announced that homeless people would be prioritized as a vulnerable population. Though he offered few details, he said there would be a massive attempt to move ...
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