BEVERLY HILLS—The city of Beverly Hills completed its annual homeless count on January 23. More than 60 local volunteers, city staff, officers from the Beverly Hills Police Department, the Beverly Hills Homeless Outreach Team, and Beverly Hills Ambassadors took part in the Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority’s (LAHSA) Greater Los Angeles Homeless Count. The annual homeless count is part of a three night County-wide endeavor to understand and address the issues of homelessness.
According to a press release from the city of Beverly Hills, participants gathered at City Hall and were trained on count procedures, learned about homeless services in the region and were sent out to several census tracts covering the entire area. A total of 16 homeless individuals, one RV and one car were counted by volunteers this year. In 2018, the number was 15 individuals, one van, and one makeshift shelter.
The city of Beverly Hills has seen a continual decrease in homeless count numbers in recent years, while the number of homeless in Los Angeles County has been on the rise.
“We attribute this to innovative collaborations and partnerships,” said James Latta, Human Services Administrator. “The City’s Human Services Division works with the Chronic Homeless Assistance Team (CHAT), comprised of the City’s Police and Fire departments and the City Prosecutor, to coordinate services and concentrate resources on the most severely ill homeless individuals who suffer from mental health, physical health and/or substance abuse. In addition, the City’s homeless outreach team focuses on intensive case management. The City holds monthly Homeless Collaboration meetings with community stakeholders including faith-based organizations in the City, the Beverly Hills Homeless Outreach Team, Beverly Hills Public Library staff, City parking staff, Park Rangers, the Beverly Hills Ambassadors Team, and other community organizations to coordinate homeless service efforts,” added Latta.
Human Services, CLASP, the BHPD, Park Rangers and the Ambassadors provide regular reports on homeless individuals in the city’s parks, parking structures, resident areas and business district to be aware of homelessness throughout the year.
Beverly Hills started participating in the LAHSA’s official count in 2009, where 42 homeless individuals were recorded. LAHSA’s three-night street counting effort consisted of 166 deployment sites and over 8,600 volunteers. Count numbers are conveyed to the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), and have an impact on federal funding directed to Los Angeles County.
To obtain more information on homeless services in Beverly Hills, and about services to assist the homeless contact Jim Latta with the Human Services Division at (310) 285-1006 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.