Homeless outreach just got a boost from Supervisor Kathryn Barger when she allocated $2.3 million from her discretionary funds. These funds will be going to the L.A. Sheriffs Homeless Outreach Services Team and the Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority Homeless Engagement Team. Spokeswoman Helen Chavez claims these teams are a “best practice” partnership and a successful model.
So let’s take a look at the recent success. In 2018 the 5th District had 4,662 homeless. In 2020 there were 5,984, an increase of 1,322, or 28.4%. In 2022 there are 7,413, an increase of 1,429, or 23.9%. If you’re like me, after looking at these numbers you’ll begin questioning the supervisor’s definition of success. Also: the $2.3 million from Barger’s discretionary fund is your money, not hers! The $532.6 million in the county budget and the $7.2 billion in the state budget for homelessness are also your money! If the objective of existing programs is to increase the homeless population, then county and city officials can claim success. If the objective is to reduce homelessness, we see a four-year record of failure and it’s time to replace failed leaders.
Any claim of success is putting lipstick on a pig!
Thomas L. Cadman