Call to Action. Stopping the Inflow of Homelessness

What’s Happening:

Many of us have seen the results of the local 2018 homeless count reporting a 22% increase in homelessness amongst older adults. The Los Angeles Aging Advocacy Coalition (LAAAC), as managed by St. Barnabas Senior Services(SBSS), has also seen a significant increase in reports of first time homeless older adults. Senior Social Service Providers such as St. Barnabas report 7 out of every 10 seniors seen in case management have a housing related issue. Furthermore, the non-profit is seeing 10 seniors per month facing homelessness within 1 year due to rising rents & evictions. And to compound challenges, the at-risk social service provider is also serving upwards of 5 new seniors per month who are living in homelessness, a new trend amongst the older adult population.

Why It Matters to LAAAC:

Los Angeles County has developed local solutions to address the homeless crisis. These solutions serve many people deemed ‘special needs’ such as veterans, people appropriate for mental health services act needs, and transition age youth, to name a few. However, the gap that has not been addressed is the ‘non-special needs’ income vulnerable older adult on a fixed income, where their income will not rebound. In other words, financially poor seniors.  Many of these fixed income seniors have lived in rent controlled buildings for many years, but even at 3% rent increases per year, the rent over 30 years eventually rises outside their income level. There are others who have been in affordable units for many years and the building was recently sold with new ownership significantly increasing the rent $400 to sometimes $1,000 per month. The many stories of older adults vary, but the common theme is showing that the 250,000 income vulnerable older adults in LA County are becoming a significant inflow into our current homeless crisis.

What we have done:

1)      SBSS, LAAAC and the seniors we serve partnered with KCRW on a report highlighting the stories of homelessness and vulnerability. Please listen to the story here: https://kcrw.co/2yRQUzX (click the audio link to listen)

 

2)      We have also spearheaded a cross-sector collaborative advocacy group focused on the needs of older adults in policy. This group, known as the Policy Action Team (PAT), is tracking local measures such as H, as well as statewide strategies like the Medi-Cal Assisted Living Waiver Expansion bill, and we are ensuring the needs of older adults are represented in these policy formations and discussions. Our PAT members are tracking policy, testifying, giving public comment and setting meetings with the appropriate policy makers to educate on the unique needs of income vulnerable older adults. Please see the attached PAT Fact Sheet.

What you can do:

1)      SBSS, LAAAC and the seniors we serve partnered with KCRW on a report highlighting the stories of homelessness and vulnerability. Please listen to the story here: https://kcrw.co/2yRQUzX (click the audio link to listen)

 

2)      We have also spearheaded a cross-sector collaborative advocacy group focused on the needs of older adults in policy. This group, known as the Policy Action Team (PAT), is tracking local measures such as H, as well as statewide strategies like the Medi-Cal Assisted Living Waiver Expansion bill, and we are ensuring the needs of older adults are represented in these policy formations and discussions. Our PAT members are tracking policy, testifying, giving public comment and setting meetings with the appropriate policy makers to educate on the unique needs of income vulnerable older adults. Please see the attached PAT Fact Sheet.

BECOME A MEMBER

Membership in the Los Angeles Aging Advocacy Coalition allows you access to policy advocacy and supports the mission to advocate for, preserve, protect and enrich the quality of life for older persons, their families and caregivers in Los Angeles County by forging joint advocacy efforts to influence fiscal and public policy https://interland3.donorperfect.net/weblink/WebLink.aspx?name=E165471&id=12

DONATE

Your donation will ensure that older adults can live housed in the community with dignity and respect https://www.facebook.com/laaacoalition/ (click donate)

TELL YOUR STORY

Stories of older adults living on the edge, or currently in homelessness, need to be shared. Policy makers need to understand the severity of this problem and the picture of human faces tells that heart wrenching story best. If you are a service provider, encourage the seniors you serve to tell their stories.

Policy-Action-Team_Fact_Sheet

 

 

 

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  • LAAAC is managed by St. Barnabas Senior Services; Funded, in part, by Archstone Foundation.
  • St. Barnabas Senior Services

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