Los Angeles sanitation workers clear a homeless encampment on the beach in Venice, California.

‘No Political Will’ to Do the Work of Ending Homelessness

A Guardian article about Los Angeles’ struggles to address homelessness cited researcher Hilary Malson and UCLA Activist-in-Residence Theo Henderson, who are both associated with the UCLA Luskin Institute on Inequality and Democracy. “There is no political will to do the hard work of addressing systemic issues that cause homelessness,” said Malson, a doctoral student in urban planning. “There is more of a will to disappear the symptom of the problem of inequality.” She said many unhoused people in Los Angeles have to learn which districts are safe for them to sleep outside in based on the political stances of different council members. “Where is the enforcement of tenant rights that prevent people from becoming unhoused?” Malson asked. “Where is the enforcement of human rights to prevent people from experiencing multiple displacements and violations?” Henderson, a podcast host who has experienced homelessness, added that “there’s a lack of funding to do what is really necessary.”

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