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By Location Alaska Albuquerque Allentown Amsterdam Anaheim Anchorage Ann Arbor Atlanta Austin Baton Rouge Bend Binghamton Boston Boulder Canada Cardiff Charlotte Chatsworth Chicago Chippenham Cleveland Columbia SC Columbus Dallas Denver Des Moines Detroit Edmonton Eugene Fayetteville Fort McMurray Fredericton Gainesville Glendale Great Falls Greensboro Harbor City Harrisburg Hawaii Hawthorne Hollywood Honolulu houston Ithaca Kalkaska Kelowna Koreatown Las Vegas Lima London London (Canada) Los Angeles Louisville Manchester Miami Minneapolis/St Paul Montreal Nashville New Orleans New York City Nickelsville Norway Oakland Ocala Oslo Ottawa Oxford Paradise Pasadena Peru Philadelphia Phoenix Pine Ridge Pittsburgh Portland Reseda Sacramento Salt Lake City San Diego San Francisco San Jose San Luis Obispo Santa Monica Saskatoon Seattle Shawnee Skid Row Springfield St John's St Louis St. Petersburg Syracuse Tacoma Tampa Toronto Traverse City Tulsa United Kingdom Vancouver Venice Beach Vermont Victoria Wales Washington DC Wentzville Westwood Wichita Wilmington Winnipeg Yellowknife By topic Addiction Advocacy Affordable housing Art and Music Awareness Charity Cold Weather College Students Community Involvement Coronavirus Couch Surfing Couple Criminalization Data Disabled Divorce Domestic violence Drug testing Education Employment Eviction Ex-convict Faith based Families Family conflict Female Financial crisis Foster care Harm reduction Health care HIV/AIDS Homeless count Homeless deaths Hostels (UK shelters) Hotels Housing First HUD Human trafficking Identification Incarceration Indigenous Invisible People Invisible Stories Job loss K2/Spice (Synthetic Marijuana) LGBT Libraries Lived Experience Male Mental illness Mobile Homeless Natural disasters NIMBY Outreach Panhandling Peer Support Pets Poverty Pregnant PTSD Public Feeding Racism Recycling Relationships Research Rural Schools Seniors Sex Offenders Sex Worker Shelters Single Parent Social Media Social Security Socks Solutions Street Soccer Survival sex System Failure Systems Change Technology Tent Cities Tiny Homes Transgender Travelers Veteran Vietnam Veteran Violence Waiting list Welfare Working poor Youth EVENTS @home contests PBS road trip road trip 2009 road trip 2010 road trip 2011 road trip 2013 to fight youth homelessness sober birthday campaign SXSW TEDx INTERVIEWS Learn More Canadian Homelessness Coronavirus and Homelessness Criminalization of Homelessness Family Homelessness Homeless Seniors Homeless Veterans Homeless Youth Homelessness Mobile Homelessness Panhandling Tent Encampments U.K. Homelessness MISCELLANEOUS 360 video Awards Cause Marketing Dream Center Gates Foundation Google Glass Media Patreon Tribute World Trade Center YouTube More Updates

Nicholas

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This interview was recorded at a protest blockading homeless sweeps around the Hollywood Bridge Housing. Bridge Housing is just a new sexy term for a homeless shelter. The city of Los Angeles wants to give the perception that these shelters are only temporary for homeless people to be placed into housing, but since there is no housing, few exit the shelters.

To get the communities to allow Bridge Housing, the city promises homeless sweeps that they call Special Enforcement Zones. When the Hollywood Bridge Shelter opened some time ago, I started sharing on social media how ridicules it is to place 72 people inside and then disrupt the lives of hundreds of homeless people with criminalization. Los Angeles spends over $30 million on homeless sweeps. That money could be used to build 15 shelters or many other much more practical uses. The criminalization of homelessness is a waste of taxpayer money.

I first met Nicholas a few nights earlier at a homeless friend’s tent. We got into a lengthy debate about advocacy. My first impression of Nicholas is he was a kind young man and really smart.

Nicholas shares about how challenging the constant displacement and harassment of homeless people who have nowhere else to go. He says he has to find new ways to survive every day. Nicholas once lost his birth certificate and social security card in a homeless sweep, and if you are not aware, replacing documents for identification is extremely hard.

During the pandemic, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has recommended that homeless sweeps are stopped because displacement is a risk to public safety. Los Angeles, like many communities, reduced the number of homeless sweeps but never actually stopped. Now, the city has authorized sweeps to continue at full scale going against CDC guidelines.

Nicholas was first homeless with his mother at 12. He remembers having his 13th birthday at a homeless shelter. You’ll see in this interview, Nicholas is very self-aware. Given the opportunity and some support,  Nicholas has a strong future, which is where you come in.

If you’d like to learn more about homeless sweeps in Los Angeles and to support advocacy working for smarter and more human solutions, visit https://servicesnotsweeps.com

Your voice can help end homelessness. If we do not fix the affordable housing crisis, homelessness will continue to get worse. Click here to tweet, email, call, or Facebook your federal and state legislators to tell them ending homelessness and creating more affordable housing is a priority to you.


Invisible People

           

We imagine a world where everyone has a place to call home. Until then, we strive to be the most trusted source for homelessness news, education and advocacy.

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