Bridging the human rights gap for better quality in healthy living.
Support services with sustainable affordable housing for the homeless and low-income population.
In Los Angeles, AIDS Healthcare Foundation launched the ‘Healthy Housing Foundation by AHF,’ which will provide decent housing units at an affordable cost to low-income people, including families with children, and those previously unsheltered or homeless. HHF will offer priority placement to individuals with chronic health conditions, including HIV/AIDS. AHF will expand the scope of its Healthy Housing Foundation across the country as the need finds, and its resources allow.
The Housing Crisis Is a Public Health Crisis
In response to widespread gentrification and rising housing costs, which are displacing AHF patients throughout California, the organization has launched Housing Is A Human Right and Healthy Housing Foundation to fulfill its public health mission. AHF believes that housing is a human right, and that California is facing a crisis that demands urgent action.
5 reasons why so many are homeless in LA County
There are many different reasons an individual or family falls into homelessness. While it’s usually a combination of things, like losing a job or falling behind on rent, sometimes the cause of homelessness is one tragic incident like losing a partner that changes someone’s living circumstance. So why do people become homeless? Learn a little more about the most common reasons, and meet a few neighbors who you may not even realize are experiencing homelessness.
Whether from losing a job, or not being able to find a job in the first place, unemployment is one of the major causes of homeless. No income, no way to keep up with living expenses. While the number of unemployed people fell to 7.4% the past few years, the number of people living in poverty has not declined. At 46.7 million living under the poverty line ($20,000 year for a family of three), that’s 15.8% of the United States.
Personal or family crisis
Individuals with an established support network and steady income can be forced into homelessness if a major health issue or family emergency arises. For people already living below the poverty line, managing everyday incidents such as having a car towed can push someone into homelessness even faster. One major health issue can derail an individual’s life including a family member’s poor health or a death in the family. Even divorce can quickly spin into homelessness as it can be expensive and impact income significantly. Often these homeless experiences are short-term and transitional, especially for families.
In cities like San Francisco and New York, affordable and available housing is in short supply. But even outside these urban areas people are feeling crunched by the rising cost of living. Since 2007, the number of poor households increased by 27% — 11.25 million families are paying 50% or more of their income toward housing. According to The Department of Housing and Urban Development, families with only one full-time worker making minimum wage couldn’t afford rent for a two-bedroom market-priced apartment anywhere in the country.
Young people are often considered the “invisible homeless” — and there are fewer statistics for this group as they don’t normally engage with services. For them, homelessness may begin as couchsurfing or crashing with friends, which is less drastic than sleeping outdoors. What we do know is that youth — including children and unaccompanied youth — make up almost 8% of the homeless population — during a year around 550,000 youth and young adults up to age 24 experience homelessness, with 380,000 being under the age of 18.
No support network
It’s easy to take your support network for granted, when you have one. But those who don’t are sharply aware of the absence. Support networks can come in many forms: a family member, friend, co-worker, or even the greater community as we see on HandUp. Knowing that someone believes in you can make all the difference.
One thing to note is that even with state-funded programs to provide a safety net, these are often not enough to avoid homelessness. Currently, the median Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) benefit for a family of three is approximately one-third of the poverty level.