(Headline USA) The new mayor of Los Angeles, Karen Bass, said Sunday her administration will start moving homeless people from tent encampments into hotels and motels.
Bass told NBC’s “Meet the Press” host, Chuck Todd, that her plan to move homeless people into rooms immediately will not “address everybody, but it is going to address, hopefully, a significant number.” She said that sanitation crews will stand by to clean up areas after people have left.
“This is not ticketing people or incarcerating people. This is moving people from tents to hotels or motels,” she said.
Bass, a Democrat and former congresswoman, has said she intends to get over 17,000 homeless people into housing in her first year through a mix of interim and permanent facilities.
An estimated 40,000 people are homeless in Los Angeles, a city of nearly 4 million. Homelessness is hugely visible throughout California with people living in tents and cars and sleeping outdoors on sidewalks and under highway overpasses.
Bass said outreach workers will try to coax people indoors. People are homeless for a variety of reasons, including mental illness, drug addiction and job loss.
The mayor’s office did not provide on Sunday details of the housing program, including what it would cost and where the money would come from.
California Gov. Gavin Newsom first launched the idea of placing homeless people in motel and hotel rooms at the start of the pandemic in 2020.
Adapted from reporting by the Associated Press