STUDIO CITY—The Studio City Neighborhood Council announced on August 31 that it will host a virtual meeting on September 3, from 5 p.m. – 7 p.m. to discuss Project Roomkey, a collaborative effort by the State, County, and the Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority (LAHSA) to secure hotel and motel rooms for vulnerable people experiencing homelessness under the pandemic.
Sportsmen’s Lodge Hotel’s participation in the project will be discussed with the owner Ben Besley, and Chief Programs Officer of Los Angeles Family Housing Kris Freed.
Governor Newsom launched the Roomkey project back in April to protect people who are homelessness from the coronavirus.
Currently, 148 rooms at Sportsmen’s Lodge are occupied by people experiencing homelessness who are at extreme risk from COVID-19. The project provides a safe place for people without a safe place to stay.
Los Angeles County intended to secure 15,000 rooms, but protests by resident and lack of service providers has impeded the progress.
Previously residents protested the use of Vanllee hotel as a Project Roomkey site, arguing that it would lead to infiltration of homeless people, making it unsafe and posing danger to local residents. Just days after the protests, three arrests were made on suspicion of narcotics possession; Vanllee pulled out of the project within a week.
Elizabeth Cook, Site Coordinator for LA Housing said, “Many hotels because of the Coronavirus, are not making a lot of money.”
“The program provide hotels money to open up to homeless people. So as an alternative way to make money they are taking part in the project,” said Cook.
The meeting is open to public and residents can submit questions in advance at: firstname.lastname@example.org.