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UD Day: Impending Evictions and Homelessness in Los Angeles

Abstract

This report is the first in a series of publications by the UCLA Luskin Institute on Inequality and Democracy to address the urgent question of housing justice in the time of COVID-19. Concerned with dispossession and displacement in Los Angeles, our research and analysis is informed by a global approach to cities and inequality.

This study focuses on the precarious state of housing for workers in Los Angeles County who are unemployed and have no replacement income. This paper is part of a larger project by researchers at UCLA working in collaboration with other researchers and with housing justice movements and community organizations to warn policy makers and the public of the impending humanitarian, social, and political disaster that Los Angeles County now faces and what can be done to mitigate the damage to Angelenos. That disaster becomes visible when the current freeze on most residential evictions is lifted and thousands of Los Angeles County tenants—both individuals and families—face imminent eviction and homelessness because they are unable to pay rent as it then becomes due. Those impending waves of evictions and homelessness will arrive in a community the with second highest percentage of renters in the United States and that was already facing an unprecedented crisis in the availability and cost of rental housing, especially for those with least to spend.

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