HOMELESS INITIATIVE

The Homeless Initiative is the central coordinating body for Los Angeles County’s ongoing effort – unprecedented in scale – to expand and enhance services for people experiencing homelessness or at risk of losing their homes.

Created by the Board of Supervisors in August 2015, the Homeless Initiative is part of the County’s Chief Executive Office and primarily funded through Measure H, a 1/4-cent sales tax approved by nearly 70% County voters in May 2017, creating a revenue stream that began in July 2017.

From Malibu to Claremont, Long Beach to Lancaster, and everywhere in between, the Homeless Initiative directs, oversees, and evaluates the strategies approved by the Board of Supervisors to address and prevent homelessness.

The Homeless Initiative also develops the spending plan Measure H and other funding that enable County departments and agencies, city governments, and more than 100 community-based service providers to scale up:

Homeless Prevention for people at risk of eviction as well as those exiting foster care, hospitals, jails, and other institutions

Street Outreach to connect people living outdoors and in vehicles to housing and supportive services

Interim Housing, such as shelters, recuperative care facilities, sober living facilities and other temporary accommodations

Permanent Housing with subsidized rent and, if necessary, intensive case management and other supportive services for people with acute needs

Affordable Housing production and preservation, as well as the protection of tenants

Supportive Services such as case management; connections to health care, mental health care, and substance use disorder treatment; criminal record clearing; benefits enrollment; job training and employment; and other services to help people achieve stability and potentially self-sufficiency

Measure H revenue is over and above what mainstream County departments and agencies spend to provide housing, programs and services to its most vulnerable residents, including medical treatment at County public hospitals, direct benefits under the County’s General Relief program, and more.

For the current fiscal year, the County set aside $1 billion towards solutions to homelessness, which includes a$529.1 million budget for the Homeless Initiative.

MEASURE H

In December 2016, the Board declared a State of Emergency on homelessness, immediately placed Measure H on the ballot, and approved the action plan developed by the Homeless Initiative.

In March 2017, 69.34% of County voters approved Measure H. By July 2017, the Homeless Initiative was able to begin tapping Measure H to implement its action plan. In December 2021, the County’s Affordable Housing unit was consolidated into the Homeless Initiative.

Measure H is projected to raise $355 million annually for 10 years — or $3.5 billion total — before expiring in September 2027, unless renewed by voters.

MAKING AN IMPACT

Since Measure H became available, the County has lifted about 80,000 people out of homelessness — about one-and-a-half times the capacity of Dodger Stadium — and provided thousands more with shelter, programs and services to help them get back on their feet.

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