LOS ANGELES (CNS) – The Los Angeles County Supervisory Board voted on Tuesday to ask for more money to support an effort to house more than 600 women and families living on downtown Skid Row.
Supervisors Hilda Solis and Holly Mitchell recommended stepping in to help the Downtown Women’s Center with its “Every Woman Housed” plan for the region.
“Given the increase in domestic violence and the number of women forced out of the workforce during the COVID-19 pandemic, we expect the one-time homeless tally in 2022 to show a significant increase. the number of homeless women in the county, ”Solis said. mentionned. “The county is committed to tackling homelessness among vulnerable residents like women and children and leveraging resources to ensure safe housing options that will prevent them from living on the streets.”
The motion cited a 2019 assessment of the Downtown Women’s Center which found that about 41.3% of chronically homeless women sleep rough most often.
These women are more likely to have experienced sexual violence: 42.2% have been sexually assaulted in their lifetime and 26.7% have been sexually assaulted in the past year, according to the motion.
Living on the streets only increases the likelihood of further assault and trauma.
The motion calls for a rallying of 200 landlords to provide quick relocation, find more funding and housing vouchers for hundreds of homeless women, and link them to mental health and addiction treatment programs.
In addition to single women, the plan aims to address placement options for 55 homeless families on Skid Row.
Mitchell said this is one of the many strategies.
“This is a critical first step in fully meeting the needs of the women living in Skid Row, who are disproportionately black women and survivors of domestic violence and trauma,” Mitchell said. “Addressing this crisis effectively will require multiple programs and strategies tailored to the different needs and realities of homeless people. “
The number of homeless women has increased by almost 70% since 2013, from 12,449 to 21,129 in 2020, according to the 2020 Greater Los Angeles Homeless Count. The overall homeless population has increased by 14% over the same period.
While black women make up less than 9% of all women in the county, they make up almost a third of the region’s homeless female population.
The vote comes as the County and City of Los Angeles continue to challenge a judge’s order to provide housing for everyone who lives on the streets of Skid Row by October.