The population of homeless individuals on the streets of Los Angeles is increasing day by day. Some people in the U.S keep on blaming the state officials while others believe that homeless people are there by choice. However, there are many initiatives that the government and other bodies have put in place to ensure the homeless are sheltered. I believe that all these three claims are right. This paper will go through three insights, explaining them in details to find out whether the city is making the right decisions in settling the homeless people. First of all, it is true that Los Angeles County has come up with a master plan for constructing houses for the homeless and also finding solutions related to unemployment, drug abuse and psychological health. Other cities have not used such logical ideas in solving the homelessness issue, but instead have imposed regulations that prevent these individuals from living in the streets.
A governmental body known as National Center on Homelessness and poverty made a report that they carried out a survey. The survey revealed that 75% of the 187cities do not allow people to beg at some designated public areas. 43% have made it law that no one should be found sleeping in their cars and 53% of these cities have prohibited homeless people just to relax around (Arapoglou, Vassilis and Kostas 39). Los Angeles elected personalities agreed that enough is enough and decided to come up with a comprehensive ideal that could help resettle the homeless in the streets. The program received county funding, and the officials housed many people, an act that impressed many. Despite all this, the problem of homelessness did not end. The primary reason for such an occurrence is that these county officials built expensive houses that homeless people could not afford (Stuart, 32).
Governmental institutions and bureaucracies have taken their time to solve the homelessness issue, though it is inevitable. They do that by approving development strategies and accustoming themselves to slow and complicated funding techniques. A recent survey shows that 81% of the total population of homeless people was in California when they became homeless, meaning that only a few people migrated from other cities to come and live in the streets of L.A. (Baker, Tomand Joshua 40). The second issue is that some people believe that it is the laxity and carelessness of the government that has led to the increase of homeless people in Los Angeles. This tells us that the county of Los Angeles is performing poorly in their quest to help the homeless find reasonable shelter. Building many affordable houses for the homeless and leaving the people who live in tents is not solving anything. The government was planning to provide full housing for people, but they failed to understand that these people should live in these houses every time until everyone else gets housing facility (Arapoglou, Vassilis and Kostas 39). These houses should not be like prisons to the homeless but should provide them with the comfort they deserve. A crisis house should not be like a permanent warehouse that is used to store human beings. A welcoming centre or houses built to fit couples, ones designed to house families who have many children and for teenagers to sound reasonable.
When one walks in the streets of Los Angeles, they see homeless people in every corner, some using makeshift encampments, some sleep in parks while others are living in some people’s homes. Such scenes bring about conversations within the neighborhood with some people shouting, “The government has lost their mandate.”(Stuart, 32). Since some people believe that these people live in the streets by choice, residents blame the county government for failing to come up with punitive regulations to help in solving the menace. The government should restrict sleeping in cars, living around the corners of Los Angeles, use aggressive ticketing, etc. to discourage homelessness. The government is operating at deficient speed to urgencies because years have passed since they came up with the idea of settling homeless people. Up to now, they have not finished transforming shelters for these people living in the streets. The L.A Homeless Services cannot accomplish their set strategies due to the bureaucracy in those offices (Wolch, Jennifer, Jason and Joshua 230).
When there were fire outrages, the county officials make announcements about the shelters they have set aside for such emergencies. It is sad to see fire victims getting housing assistance from the county, but our brothers and sisters who are homeless are still making ends meet in these dungeons. Homeless people might be victims of domestic violence, poverty, poor housing initiatives, etc., so they also need our help. We cannot tolerate such kind of negligence from the government because these people need immediate help, whether we use available facilities like temples and churches within the locality. Lastly, it might be a myth, but there is some truth in it that those homeless people we see in the streets are there because they choose to do so. It might be politically incorrect, but it is true. This statement means that the city of L. A has failed to come up with regulations to discourage homelessness.“Why is it that many cities in the U.S have homeless people, but the highest percentage is in Los Angeles?” (Wolch, Jennifer, Jason and Joshua 230). Homeless people in Los Angeles sleep in the cold without a roof to safeguard them, some of them sleeping in cars. It is not accidental for these people to live like this. Back in the year 2006, the federal law discouraged the officials of the city of Los Angeles from evicting the homeless from the streets. The federal court gave them an alternative to building shelters for these people.“Let them eat asphalt.” A City official said (Baker, Tom and Joshua 40). It is factual that some homeless people have decided to remain in the streets because they want to stay united with their families. Some also fear losing their property that is in the streets. It might be true that people have chosen Los Angeles because the weather is warm enough to give them a favourable condition, especially at night. It might also be true that most of the homeless people who live in Los Angeles are mentally unstable. Some researchers have claimed that this is a misconception that is politically incorrect and divisive.
Recent research only revealed that 28%of these individuals are psychologically disturbed (Arapoglou, Vassilis and Kostas 39). Therefore, mental illness cannot be ruled out at this juncture. It is a factor that leads to homelessness in all the 187 cities where the researchers carried out surveys. Research reveals that there are two kinds of homeless people in the streets of Los Angeles (Arapoglou, Vassilisand Kostas 39). The first group is those who require assistance from the government in building them permanent houses. These people include the ones living with a disability, the mentally challenged, those who have been homeless for an extended period and those individuals with criminal records. The other group consists of individuals who should be rehoused due to being rendered jobless or have been evicted from their houses. The city should find a way of dealing with such cases urgently.
Ending homelessness is not an easy task, and it requires patience. I believe the county government of Los Angeles has not done enough to reduce the number of homeless people in the streets. When we raise enough funds, we can build affordable houses to give shelter to these people. The government should provide subsidies, social workers and assistance to the homeless families that are being evicted from the streets. Such initiatives should be done immediately these people land in these streets for smooth execution. Permanent houses are better than encampments since we cannot entirely end homelessness. We need to set our myths aside by identifying the reality and coming up with solutions.