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WeHo Homeless Count Shows a Rise Consistent with Region

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Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority’s (LAHSA) has published official results from its 2019 Greater Los Angeles Homeless Count. The West Hollywood count took place on January 31 and was intended to provide point-in-time data to help understand the state of homelessness in our community.

The count, with multipliers/conversion factors, found an estimated population of 131 — an increase from 100 in 2018 and 105 in 2017. This included: Persons on the street – 111; Persons in cars – 8.5; Persons in vans – 1.7; Persons in RV/campers – 1.9; Persons in makeshift shelters – 5.6; and Persons in tents – 2.6.

Importantly, LAHSA applies a SPA-level multiplier (Service Planning Area) to the raw data in order to standardize the estimates of people living in vehicles, makeshift shelters, and tents. For example, a baseline number of 6 is then calculated with a statistical multiplier to total 8.5. Such multipliers/conversion factors are used to estimate the total LAHSA count across the region, and those formulas change year over year.

WeHo’s Homeless Initiative addresses homelessness with a multi-disciplinary, multi-agency, collaborative approach. The Initiative works in close partnership with the City’s contracted and collaborative nonprofit social services providers, the West Hollywood Sheriff’s Station, and Los Angeles County agencies to address homelessness. This includes street outreach services to to offer shelter, substance abuse treatment, health care, mental health services, housing opportunities, and more. The outreach teams also provides food and hygiene kits, as well as blankets, socks, and other emergency supplies.

During the past three years, the City of West Hollywood’s Homeless Initiative has achieved positive measureable results in collaboration with grant-funded community partners, including the following highlights:

•  Ascencia has housed 50 people who were formerly homeless in West Hollywood and Step Up On Second has housed 28 individuals, for a total of 78 people successfully placed into permanent housing. This includes chronically homeless community members who are impacted by severe and persistent mental illness, which make the barriers and challenges in bringing people into service and housing even greater;

•  The LA LGBT Center’s Youth Center has provided emergency shelter and transitional living services for West Hollywood-affiliated youth, including 9,255 bed nights for 87 unduplicated youth;

•  A total of 381 West Hollywood residents accessed City of West Hollywood rental assistance programs through NCJW/LA and the Alliance for Housing & Healing, enabling them to remain in their rental housing in West Hollywood and preventing them from falling into homelessness;

•  Tarzana Treatment Center and Safe Refuge provided detox and residential treatment to at least 22 unduplicated West Hollywood community members who were homeless and McIntyre House’s assisted 35 West Hollywood clients with housing and treatment of which 18 had become homeless due to their substance abuse; and

•  Housing Works provided housing retention services and support to 30 individuals who were formerly homeless in West Hollywood who have been housed through the City’s allocated Continuum of Care vouchers through the Housing Authority of the County of Los Angeles (HACoLA) or through the Housing Authority of City of Los Angeles (HACLA).

The City of West Hollywood’s Homeless Initiative provides on-site outreach and services at West Hollywood Library during weekdays. Outreach is designed for people in the community who are homeless and is coordinated by representatives from direct service nonprofit organizations. The program is a strategic collaboration of the City of West Hollywood, the County of Los Angeles Public Library, and the City’s contracted social services provider organizations.

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