The Los Angeles City Mayor Eric Garcetti addressed the effects of COVID-19 within the unsheltered population. On Friday, June 12, the mayor wanted to bring a focal point to the health crisis, that applied weight to the fragility of the economy. Additionally, Garcetti acknowledged the call for social reform presented in city protest. Circling to issues within the community before coronavirus, homelessness has been a concern viewed as a national crisis. COVID-19 has added an extra layer of demise within that population, the mayor held a briefing to share the developments in place to bring aid to those who need it most.
“…Amidst this pain, there is also urgent work for us. Urgent work to take this moment and to meet it, not to miss it. To do what we can do both individually and privately, as well as publicly and together to make sure this moment isn’t lost.”
The mayor continued to highlight the business of maintaining growth and recovery, he spoke about the intensity of fighting against COVID-19. Mayor Garcetti reemphasized the importance of upholding physical distancing guidelines in order to maintain the stability and control over the spread of the virus. The city’s order has been updated, to reflect the reopening of locations permitted in Los Angeles County. The mayor shared that fitness centers, museums, aquariums, galleries, hotels, and day camps are approved to be open. Garcetti reiterated the choice of opening is voluntary for the business. He encouraged them to take their time to ensure the proper steps to a safe opening.
There are certain health requirements to protect the staff and guests of each sector. There is an estimation of 200,000 deaths due to COVID-19 within the United States, the mayor declared that the city needs to be prepared to do everything possible to fight the spread within the community. A consistent factor that all public officials stand behind is COVID-19 testing as a strong defense. In L.A. over 20,000 people can get tested within a day, Garcetti encouraged those who were protesting to schedule an appointment at the nearest testing site. On Friday, over 600,000 Angelenos were tested, the city is joining forces with the county to further develop studies and tests that focuses on contract tracing.
General Hospitalization continues to be stable, several hundred beds and over a thousand ventilators are currently available to treat COVID-19 and other severe respiratory concerns. The county reported over 1,000 positive cases on Friday and over 200 deaths, there has been two weeks in a row where nearly 10,000 positive cases were added. The mayor is looking into ways to keep those numbers down, as the world anticipates a cure for the virus.
Garcetti touched on the present battle for social reform, the death of George Floyd called for action in all levels of government to listen and to act. “We can’t just grieve, we need to grow. We need this to be a transformative moment.” The first meeting was held with the newly commissioned Civil and Human Rights Department. Garcetti stated he will continue taking broad steps forward, looking at the city budget and policies and making sure that Los Angeles is aligned with progressive movements of equal opportunity. The crisis among the unsheltered is one concern that crosses both economic and racial inequities.
Due to the outbreak of COVID-19 the city began receiving necessary aid and grants to house people who were experiencing homelessness. The formula that left so many people unsheltered is when trauma meets unmanageable living costs. Over 20,000 Angelenos were housed last year, nearly 430-million dollars of the city budget will focus on the needs of the unsheltered. By August there will be 24 new shelters in Los Angeles, establishing 1,800 beds to be available. The mayor is looking to address the needs of the streets. The city is looking to get ahead of the next wave of homelessness, by looking at the root cause of residents becoming homeless. Narrowing down the issue to the underserved communities heavily affected by the imbalance in support for living in L.A., there is a mission to house Black Angelenos by fighting the poverty found in the African American Communities.