Hundreds of homeless people will be connected to service providers on Aug. 27 during the Midtown Homeless Connect Day, being held from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the Pan Pacific Park Recreation Center.
Representatives from numerous county and city agencies, nonprofits and private service providers will help link people with resources. Participants can receive assistance with legal representation, medical services, housing and more. Showers, free haircuts, lunch and donated clothing and hygiene kits will be offered.
The event is being held by the Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority in conjunction with the offices of Los Angeles City Councilman David Ryu, 4th District, and Los Angeles County Supervisor Sheila Kuehl, 3rd District, and state Sen. Ben Allen (D-Santa Monica) and state Assemblyman Richard Bloom (D-Santa Monica). Other sponsors include the Mid City West Community Council, the Midtown Los Angeles Homeless Coalition, People Assisting the Homeless, the Center at Blessed Sacrament, and the People Concern, which will have booths at the event.
LAHSA and other service providers have been spreading the word about Midtown Homeless Connect Day. The Los Angeles Police Department will also be present for public safety purposes.
Ryu, who has previously sponsored similar events in Los Feliz and Sherman Oaks, said they can have a significant impact in improving people’s lives.
“This is our fourth homeless connect day in Council District 4, and I have seen just how crucial they are in connecting our unhoused neighbors with the tools that rebuild hope, whether its housing, medical services or a hot shower,” Ryu said. “But these events don’t just help those experiencing homelessness; they bring neighborhoods together over a shared purpose of seeing and serving our unhoused neighbors and committing to solving this crisis of our time. Solving homelessness takes more than housing alone; it takes all of us. As we bring more housing resources to Council District 4, I implore everyone in this great community to join their neighbors, get involved and make a real difference in the lives of those living on the street.”
Kuehl also highlighted the importance of having comprehensive services that can serve the largest number of people.
“Our homeless connect days help people right here in the Third [supervisorial] District who are experiencing homelessness and simply need services and referrals all in one place, cutting down on red tape and ameliorating transportation issues they encounter when trying to get assistance,” Kuehl said. “It’s a great example of government, community groups, nonprofits, local businesses and neighbors joining together to help those most in need.”
Staff from Los Angeles City Attorney Mike Feuer’s office will assist with mitigating citations for minor traffic infractions and low-level offenses, such as loitering and drinking in public, and having them expunged in exchange for people accepting housing and other services.
“My office is deeply committed to helping people who are homeless, or at risk of becoming homeless, turn their lives around,” Feuer said. “At this event, our staff will help resolve eligible traffic and pedestrian infractions that carry fines and fees our participants can’t afford, connecting them instead with services such as housing, case management, health assessments and benefits assistance that can help them start new lives.”
Scott Epstein, chair of the Mid City West Community Council, said the event is an important component in the overall approach to solving homelessness. The council will provide meals and many volunteers.
“This is definitely a passion for our council,” Epstein said. “It’s the first time a homeless connect day has been held in our area for over three years, and it’s really important. It’s the best way to connect people with services and get them into the case management system. We are really excited to play our part.”
Feuer’s office held a similar event at Pan Pacific Park in 2016. More volunteers are being sought, and interested people should call Rob Fisher in Ryu’s office at (323)957-6415, or email email@example.com. The Pan Pacific Park Recreation Center is located at 7600 Beverly Blvd. For information, visit davidryu.lacity.org/midtown_homeless_connect_day and supervisorkuehl.com/midtown-homeless-connect-day.
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