From the Los Angeles Times, “Councilmen weigh legal action, saying other cities are pushing homeless into L.A.”:
Councilmen Mike Bonin and Joe Buscaino called Wednesday for City Atty. Mike Feuer to explore “legal steps” that L.A. could use to compel those cities to comply with a federal court decision on homelessness and sidewalk camping in Boise, Idaho. The proposal, they said, would stop nearby cities from pushing homeless people into L.A. city boundaries.
The U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled last year that homeless individuals may not be held criminally responsible for sleeping on government property when no alternative shelter is available.
Bonin, whose council district touches Santa Monica, Culver City and El Segundo, said he believes many cities in the region are not complying with that decision.
“Instead of allowing people to sleep on their sidewalks, they are encouraging people, or compelling people, to move to the city of Los Angeles to do that,” he said.
I’ve occasionally wondered in these pages why people who are homeless in a place with a cold and/or wet climate, e.g., Seattle, do not relocate to Santa Monica. Readers have put forward various theories about the challenges faced by the homeless. The LA Times article shows that at least some cities are eager to see homeless residents move to other places (but they also want to provide sanctuary to undocumented low-skill immigrants?).
Would it make sense for cities to hire concierges for their homeless populations? The concierge El Segundo, for example, would organize luxury bus tours of nearby California cities, would know the best places to camp out and receive services in each of those places, etc. Instead of an arms race of hostility, seeing which city can make life miserable for the homeless, try to facilitate their moves.
[The article also contains a comparison of homeless to trash that, had Donald Trump made it, would have been newsworthy:
Councilman Jose Huizar and several colleagues called for increased enforcement, fines and rewards, along with the expansion of a program that allows homeless and formerly homeless individuals to work on cleanup crews.
“I have long said that downtown Los Angeles needs an emergency, triage-like response when it comes to addressing homelessness,” Huizar said in a statement. “But that is also true for the amount of trash that is illegally dumped on our streets.”
Readers: What do you think? Cities already provide a lot of services to the homeless. Why not a concierge to help with moving?