Why Is Homelessness Increasing So Much?

Why do so many people experience homelessness in LA?

Answer

According to the data gathered in the 2018 Greater Los Angeles Homeless Count, the Homeless population in Los Angeles County decreased by 4% from the 2017 Homeless Count. It is important to note that visible Homelessness increased year over year from 2017 (slide 13). Homelessness is a complex issue with multiple contributing factors ranging from systemic injustices to the health of the economy.  In Los Angeles we face the huge challenge of the lack of affordable housing. 

Homelessness is a complex issue with a number of contributing factors, ranging from systemic injustices to the health of the economy. In Los Angeles, our main challenge is that we have one of the least affordable housing markets in America. LA County needs over 565,000 new affordable housing units for low-income renters—16,000 more than the previous year. Since 2000, median rent in Los Angeles County has increased 32% while median renter household income has decreased 3%.

Sources: California Housing Partnership Corporation. (May 2018). Los Angeles County’s Housing Emergency and Proposed Solutions; California Housing Partnership Corporation (May 2017). Los Angeles County Renters in Crisis: A Call for Action.


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