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Indybay Feature
The Issues Surrounding Homelessness
by Modesti Alejandra Padilla
Wednesday Nov 20th, 2019 4:27 PM
Homelessness in Sonoma County and Los Angeles have gotten out of hand. Despite the causes, the effects of homelessness are detrimental to our society and something needs to be done. We need to start somewhere because the current policies put in place to help reduce homelessness have made some impact, but nothing significant enough. As a country, we have overlooked the issue of homelessness long enough.
Homelessness has been an issue in our country for a long time. Specifically larger cities/counties, such as Los Angeles and Sonoma County, have been significantly affected by homelessness. These two areas have a vast and constantly growing homeless population.

Research has found that many women are leaving abusive spouses/relationships and have nowhere else to go which ends up leaving them homeless. Usually, the homeless people who have a car and/or who have resided in a specific area for quite some time, tend to make more connections; thus, making it easier for them to gain access to resources.

Furthermore, homeless people are victims of violent crimes such as murder, robbery, assault, etc., because they are easy targets. Typically, when it is a homeless person committing the crime, it is often a non-violent, nuisance crimes such as loitering or petty theft.

The policies and laws that have been put in place to reduce the homelessness population have been ineffective and are long overdue for some improvement. The policies put in place to help/advocate for homeless victims are not enough to help rehabilitate them, because most of the time, homeless victims usually suffer from some sort of mental illness.

The programs/systems put in place to help reduce homelessness/help the homeless, such as the Main Street Project, the Safer Cities Initiative, the Living Room, Safe Parking, are all only temporary solutions because they show very little improvement. We need to find a more permanent solution for homelessness, but it starts by having compassion for people who need help and are afraid to ask, or sometimes can’t ask for it.

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