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LA’s Rehousing System Ended Homelessness for 21,000 People In 2021
LAHSA aims to increase the pace of permanent housing placement through a new strategic vision.
On June 23, the Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority (LAHSA) released new insight on the latest progress made in LA’s rehousing system at its State of Homelessness event. Despite the current housing shortage, rising rent costs, and stagnant wages, LAHSA’s rehousing system rehoused 21,213 Angelenos in 2021, marking a total of 86,303 people permanently housed over the last four years.
LAHSA also announced that it sheltered 27,701 people in 2021. As its shelter system continues to reopen beds as the COVID-19 pandemic wanes, LAHSA sited the increased investment in programs like Project Roomkey, tiny homes, and A Bridge Home for the continued success at bringing people inside.
LAHSA also spotlighted the accomplishments of its outreach teams in 2021. Despite the demand for shelter continuing to outpace available shelter beds dramatically, LAHSA’s outreach workers successfully moved 5,175 people experiencing unsheltered homelessness into interim housing and 1,343 into permanent homes. The outreach teams helped feed LA County’s unhoused neighbors by distributing 105,579 free meals to people living on the streets. And they saved the lives of 583 people by administering Narcan to people who were experiencing a drug overdose.
“We’re very proud of the more than 21,000 people we helped come home last year, but we aren’t close to satisfied. We will continue to work until every single LA resident has a safe and permanent place to sleep,” states Molly Rysman, LAHSA’s Acting Co-Executive Director. “It’s a long-term fight on all sides, but in conjunction with our partners and the Los Angeles community, we are determined to use every cent of funding to pave a clear and more expedited road toward bringing our local unhoused residents indoors.”
Systemic racism has and continues to be a driver of homelessness in Los Angeles County, with Black and Latin(x) people making up 34% and 36% of people experiencing homelessness, respectively, as of the 2020 Homeless Count. LAHSA announced that 34% of the people its system served were Black, and 36% were Latin(x).
“It is important to the hundreds of people working at LAHSA that we continue to make significant strides to help our Black and Latin(x) unhoused neighbors come inside and find permanent housing,” said LAHSA Acting Co-Executive Director Kristina Dixon. “We will continue to advocate for the resources and solutions necessary to ensure our systems address the disproportionate impact that homelessness is having on BIPOC communities quickly and equitably.”
LAHSA also touted its Problem-Solving efforts as a significant supportive pillar that works in tandem with the other programs used to decrease homelessness across the LA County and can help people on the verge of experiencing homelessness stay in their homes. In 2021, Problem Solving aided 7,439 Angelenos in keeping their homes, reuniting individuals with their families, or with financial support in securing a new home.
LAHSA’s Acting Co-Executive Directors, Kristina Dixon and Molly Rysman, alongside Carter Hewgley from the United Way, Irene Muro of Whittier First Day, and LAHSA Youth System Manager Kenneth Chancy, addressed LA’s most recent progress ending homelessness as well as LAHSA’s new vision to improve its efficiency moving people from shelter to housing a panel discussion at the State of Homelessness event.
Last month, LAHSA announced that it is pivoting its strategy to reduce unsheltered homelessness faster. To achieve that goal, LAHSA and its partners are making changes to the rehousing system that will speed up the process of moving someone from shelter to a permanent home. The changes LAHSA is implementing include updating how it matches people to permanent supportive housing, increasing permanent housing placements by prioritizing the use of time-limited subsidies, and redesigning the housing navigation program.
To watch the 2022 State of Homelessness, please visit: https://youtu.be/tyLZqq29l0w
For more information on the 2022 State of Homelessness, please visit: https://www.lahsa.org/documents?id=6297-2022-state-of-homelessness-presentation