March 25, 2019
Latest News

Los Angeles: City of the stars ... and the homeless

Los Angeles, Apr 14 (efe-epa).- Los Angeles is the world's entertainment capital, as is evident at world-famous, red-carpet ceremonies like the Oscars, Emmys and the Grammys.

But L.A. also has another, unglamorous aspect that rarely receives attention in the media: a skyrocketing homeless population.

The number of people living in the streets or in shelters in Los Angeles County has risen by 75 percent over the past six years, from 32,000 to nearly 58,000.

Homelessness surged by 23 percent in 2017 alone, according to official figures from the United States' Department of Housing and Urban Development, which says that Skid Row - an area just to the east of the city's financial district - is the epicenter of a problem that also has extended to popular tourist areas like Hollywood.

HUD said in its 2017 Annual Homeless Assessment Report to Congress that on a single night last year 553,742 people were experiencing homelessness in the US.

New York City had the largest homeless population (76,501), although 95 percent of those individuals were sheltered.

By contrast, 74.7 percent of the 55,188 homeless persons in Los Angeles City & County were not being sheltered, the second-worst rate after Fresno/Madera County, California (75.8 percent)

Harmony, a woman in her 20s who appears twice as old, is among those experiencing this plight. For several months, she has been forced to spend her nights at gas station just a few meters (yards) from the Chateau Marmont Hotel.

She told EFE she had been laid off from her job and could no longer afford the skyrocketing rent costs in Los Angeles County.

Harmony said she did not have a problem with drugs or alcohol and was confident she would be given a new employment opportunity, adding that she had applied for work at nearly 30 different places.

Rick Lomas, 67, also has been spending his days at the same gas station, where he provides directions to motorists and pedestrians.

Lomas lost his job in Van Nuys, California, two years ago for consuming drugs, but he said with a smile on his face that he had found a place to spend the night where he would not be beaten up.

Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti says the city government plans to reduce the homeless population by half within five years and reach a "functional zero"-level by 2028 in part by using $1.2 billion in homeless housing funds that were approved by voters in 2016.

That money is to be used to build 10,000 housing units over the next decade.

Garcetti also said this week that he backed a legislative proposal to earmark around $1.5 billion of California's projected $6.1 billion budget surplus for programs to address homelessness in cities across the state.

But two members of Los Angeles' homeless population said the city was not acting quickly enough.

Vicky and her son Moses, who have been spending their nights huddled in a sleeping bag on Poinsettia Place, outside the building where Oprah Winfrey's OWN network operates, said 2028 was very far off and they needed concrete actions now.

News history
Gov't works to learn fate of over 40,000 missing in Mexico

Mexico City, Mar 25 (efe-epa).- The government said over the weekend that it was reactivating the National Missing Persons Search System in an effort to...

Indonesian police find drugged baby orangutan inside Russian's suitcase

Jakarta, Mar 25 (efe-epa).- Indonesian police have discovered a drugged baby orangutan hidden inside the luggage of a Russian man at the international...

Ebola death toll climbs past 600 in DR Congo

Kinshasa, Mar 25 (efe-epa).- The death toll from the Ebola virus in the Democratic Republic of the Congo on Monday stood at 629 after an outbreak erupted...

Innovative recycling program humanizing a Panamanian prison

Panama City, Mar 24 (efe-epa).- Four years ago La Joyita seemed to be more of a dump than a prison. The inmates in the Panamanian prison walked over and...

First Guatemalan Maya woman runs Los Angeles Marathon

Los Angeles, Mar 24 (efe-epa).- When the starting gun sounded on Sunday for the Los Angeles Marathon, Maria del Carmen Tun Cho felt like a winner already by...

Doctor shortage forecast in US, but foreign docs struggling to get licensed

Miami, Mar 24 (efe-epa).- The practice of medicine in the US may well find itself in intensive care in the coming years due to the high demand for...

Indian government's pledge to fight tuberculosis gives experts hope

New Delhi, Mar 24 (efe-epa).- The prime minister of India – a country that accounted for roughly one-fourth of the around 10 million tuberculosis cases...

Brazil develops technology for sterilizing organ transplants

Sao Paulo, Mar 23 (efe-epa).- Researchers at the University of Sao Paulo have discovered a way to sterilize organs to be used as transplants, thanks to a...

10 Pct. of Mexicans lack safe drinking water

Mexico City, Mar 22 (epa-efe).- Ten percent of the Mexican population does not have access to safe drinking water, the National Autonomous University of...

Morocco's Christians see papal visit as chance to secure religious freedom

Fatima Zohra Bouaziz

Indonesian students pray for New Zealand mosque attack victims

Jakarta, Mar 22 (efe-epa).- Dozens of Muslim students gathered Friday in the Indonesian capital to remember the victims of a deadly terrorist attack two...

LatAm needs more creators of "serious video games"

Guadalajara, Mexico, Mar 21 (efe-epa).- The use of "serious video games" for health and sports preparation is increasing in Latin America, but the region...

Rio de Janeiro shantytown is oasis in sea of violence

Rio de Janeiro, Mar 21 (efe-epa).- A far cry from the image of violence and lack of security in Rio de Janeiro's poor neighborhoods, the "favela" or...

Mexican president seeks to reassure teachers on education bill

Mexico City, Mar 21 (epa-efe).- Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador said Thursday that his administration is committed to abolishing the...

Ulta-Orthodox Israeli city told it has to allow election posters of women

Jerusalem, Mar 21 (efe-epa).- Israel's election watchdog told an ultra-Orthodox city on Wednesday that it has to allow campaign posters of women politicians.

Boom and gloom in China as rapid development brings surge in depression

By Javier Castro Bugarín

Boom and gloom in China as rapid development brings surge in depression

By Javier Castro Bugarín

Boom and gloom in China as rapid development brings surge in depression

By Javier Castro Bugarín

India battles it out with color to mark the annual Holi festival

Vrindavan, India, Mar 20 (efe-epa).- Men, women and children battled it out on the streets of India on Thursday to mark Holi, the annual festival of color.

Two sentenced to life in prison over lynching of Pakistani student

Islamabad, Mar 21 (efe-epa).- A Pakistani anti-terrorism court on Thursday sentenced two more people to life imprisonment over the 2017 lynching of a...

After mass detentions, China razes Muslim communities to build a loyal city

Urumqi, China, Mar 20 (efe-epa).- In this old Silk Road city in western China, a state security campaign involving the detention of vast numbers of people...

Protesting teachers besiege Mexican Congress

Mexico City, Mar 20 (epa-efe).- The lower house of Mexico's Congress suspended a session scheduled for Wednesday after members of the militant CNTE teachers...

Cardiovascular events cause 58 pct. of deaths among diabetics

Mexico City, Mar 20 (epa-efe).- Fifty-eight percent of deaths of people with type 2 diabetes are due to cardiovascular events, a leader Mexican expert said...

Hundreds of Salvadorans march against water privatization

San Salvador, Mar 20 (efe-epa).- Some 500 people marched Wednesday in the Salvadoran capital to demand that lawmakers move immediately to approve a...

I agree Welcome to We use cookies to improve your online experience. Find out more.