In 2015, the increasing numbers of homeless people forced the city of Los Angeles to declare a state of emergency. Unfortunately, many of these people were veterans who had served valiantly in our military and had fought in wars in Vietnam, Iraq, Korea, and other war-torn countries. For some who came back home, their lives were never the same.
Sadly, some veterans had to learn to live with disabilities due to losing limbs or suffering traumatic brain injuries while serving. Others were diagnosed with mental disorders such as depression or Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). Many of these veterans simply couldn’t cope when they came back to the United States and those without a strong support system, whether from family, friends, or the government, ended up losing everything they had forcing them to become homeless.
For homeless veterans in Los Angeles, however, the city, along with a hardworking nonprofit organization called Step Up, are doing what they can to decrease the number of homeless people on the streets. Thanks to their tireless efforts, the number of homeless veterans has dropped down to 30%. One of the ways in which they are making this possible is by transforming run-down, old hotels into apartments for veterans who are homeless and living on the street.
Once tenants move into a hotel room that have been converted into an apartment, they can stay as long as they like. These apartment units are available on a first come first served basis. Besides transforming such hotels into apartments, the city of Los Angeles has hopes to offer incentives to landlords who might offer housing to a homeless person.
It’s the goal of the city that through programs such as these, they can bring the number of homeless people in their city down to zero. It’s an amazing prospect and definitely a worthy goal, especially if homeless veterans end up getting a good home, which is something they truly deserve.