(Los Angeles) The mayor of Los Angeles declared a state of emergency on Monday following skyrocketing homelessness, saying she wants “radical change” to address this thorny issue for the second-largest American city.
Tens of thousands of people sleep on the streets of Los Angeles, their tents scattered around the city astonishing tourists who come to visit one of the wealthiest urban areas on the planet.
A population that is also more affected by mental health or addiction problems.
Karen Bass, the city’s first woman elected mayor in November, took office on Sunday and declared a state of emergency the next day.
“I will not tolerate a homelessness crisis that affects over 40,000 people and affects all of us,” she explained.
My mission is to lead Los Angeles in a new direction with a quick and strategic approach to solving one of the toughest challenges facing our city.
Karen Bass, Mayor of Los Angeles
“Recourse to the state of emergency allows us to speed things up,” assured Karen Bass, announcing a “radical change” in the operating mode.
In the coming days, the city councilor has indicated that she will sign a series of decrees tackling this problem, for example by providing temporary accommodation through the rental of apartments and hotel rooms.
Formerly elected to the House of Representatives, Karen Bass was very involved in the community life of Los Angeles, the city where she is from.
She was elected mayor against the wealthy property developer Rick Caruso, after a campaign dominated by the issue of homelessness, which has become omnipresent in local public debate.
Some of the most expensive rents in the country, the high cost of living and taxes well above the national average further complicate the situation.
Los Angeles preparing to host the Olympic Games in 2028, many observers believe that the municipality will be all the more motivated to remove the multiple tents, sometimes installed only a few meters from luxury shops or imposing villas.