Editorial Assignment

Editorial Assignment

Summary of the Editorial

The Daily Brunt Editorial opinion talks about the need to address the preexisting homelessness in Loss Angeles as opposed to focusing so much on preventive measures. According to the author, preventative action is not a bad idea, but the government must first address the already high scales of homelessness experienced in LA. There is much focus on preventing measures, with the UCLA recently unveiled an algorithm to help the government predict homelessness and will be funded by Measure H program.

The program is not a bad idea, according to the editorial. However, the problem is that LA is not making the same progress in addressing the prevailing homeless population. For instance, LA’s Proposition HHH, a bond approved in 2016 and meant to develop 10,000 housing units for the homeless population only managed to open one housing development in four years. This, according to the author is a clear case that there is nothing desirable with preventive measures when pushed against the heels of messed up immediate progress.

Funding the preventive programs through Measure H is merited, but it only yields fruit when the government directs reasonable efforts and resources toward funding the current housing programs such as Proposition HHH to address already what qualifies as homelessness crisis in LA. There is a concern for the mismanagement of the Proposition HHH bond, with lack of departments assigned countrywide to oversee decision making on how the funds should be appropriated, alongside other issues such as zoning problems and neighborhood disapproval that LA must focus on first before shifting emphasis on other preventive measures. The biased nature of algorithms as predictive programs also raised a concern about the implementation of the proposed algorithm.


A Letter of Support

November 12, 2020

Mr. (Name)


RE: Supporting the Editorial on “LA’s Focus on Preventative Measures Distracts from Preexisting Homeless Population.”

Dear Editors,

The January 8, 2020 editorial “LA’s focus on preventative measures distracts from the preexisting homeless population” in both its front-page and closing statement powerfully magnifies the urgent need for LA county government to direct much of the efforts and resources toward funding the existing housing programs such as Proposition HHH instead of shifting attention to preventive measure. This will help to address already what can best be described as a homelessness crisis in LA County. I support the idea that preventive measures as currently emphasized by the government are a good move, but that should not surpass the need to solve already homelessness crisis in the county and failures of preexisting housing programs such as Proposition HHH due to mismanagement.

Homeless populations are surging LA every day. According to the recent count by LA officials, homelessness in the county was 12% overall and 16% in the City of LA, putting the county’s homeless population at about 58,936 and the LA city’s at 36,300 in 2019. The surge in the homeless people in the county continues to worsen despite the communities surrounding the state channeling more funds to services for the homeless. For instances, the LA’s Measure H sales tax adds about $355 million annually to the arsenal (Cowan 2019).  Majority of people living on the streets are pushed there by economic challenges such as losing jobs, and some fled abusive marriages, others due to mental illness and some as a result of housing market growing progressively every fast and unforgiving (Salam, 2019). Homelessness in LA like across the U.S. play around social problems, poverty, racial justice, inequality, sexism and many others, an indication that affordable housing scheme will always remain a need in LA just like it is across the nation.

A solution to such problems requires strengthening, siting and building many supportive housing units for the chronically homeless populations as promised under Proposition HHH in every part of the city not just where the backlash is weakest (Cowan 2019).  Instead of spending much money on predictive algorithms, which often are subject to biasness, policymakers should focus on laws and incentives that encourage the construction of affordable housings.

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Cowan, J. (2019). Homeless Populations Are Surging in Los Angeles. Here’s why. Los Angeles Times.

Salam, R. (2019). Los Angeles Is in Crisis. So Why Isn’t It Building More Housing? Rising rents are feeding a surge in homelessness. The Atlantic.