Thursday, July 17, 2014

L.A. leaders are crafting new plan to help homeless on skid row

"Los Angeles officials are developing a new strategy for taming pervasive homelessness on skid row, easing up on arrests for petty offenses while concentrating mental health, medical, housing and sanitation services in the long troubled swath of downtown. Officials say the effort involves cooperation between the city and county, whose inability to mesh hampered earlier homelessness plans in the 50-block neighborhood. The area now finds itself pinched by gentrification, with homeless people camping in tents just around the corner from trendy,upscale bars and restaurants. The changes grew in part out of the frustration of skid row beat cops like LAPD Officer Deon Joseph, who issued an anguished cry for help to answer what he described as a mental health crisis."

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