Homeless Count 2020
Law enforcement personnel are often the first contact with those experiencing homelessness. For that reason LASD HOST was created to exemplify the county’s efforts to combat homelessness and preserve public safety. HOST’s mission is to positively impact the homeless crisis in the county while increasing public safety and preserving the rights and dignity of persons experiencing homelessness.
Sheriff Alex Villanueva said “Over the past three evenings, LASD personnel escorted volunteers throughout the county of for Homeless Count 2020. Homelessness is a complex issue for the County. These residents struggle with poverty, some struggle with mental illness. Unfortunately, our younger adults are more vulnerable. Young People who lack stable housing are at a higher risk of being trafficked and more likely to experience substance use and depression.
By conducting these counts with the Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority, and forming collaborations with service providers, LASD’s Homeless Outreach Services Team (HOST) continues to assist those experiencing homelessness throughout the County. Los Angeles County has established subsidies to support our most vulnerable residents, and it has proven affordable and effective. The County is redoubling efforts to combat this issue, and as part of the county family, the Sheriff’s Department is as well.
It is my goal to increase the number of Department personnel assigned to the LASD’ HOST three-fold to help people get on their feet and off the streets. By providing compassion and access to services, we can help those in need and keep them out of our jail system.”
Through our contacts with thousands of homeless neighbors, HOST has earned a reputation for being compassionate, accountable, innovative, and bold. HOST has transcended the role of traditional law enforcement. For years, HOST has accomplished the mission with zero uses of force.
Video courtesy of KTLA 5.