LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) — As the March 3 primary election quickly approaches, California voters are voicing concerns about what they view as the most important issues for politicians to tackle.
Results from a new statewide poll conducted by the University of Southern California Schwarzenegger Institute for State and Global Policy released Thursday showed nearly 23 percent of respondents indicated homelessness or housing as their top issue, followed by 14.8 percent reporting that they are primarily concerned with climate change and the environment.
Over 9 percent of respondents put immigration as their top issue and 7.5 percent of respondents named President Donald Trump.
More than one-quarter of California voters personally know someone who is homeless, the survey found. The possibility of ending up without a home as well is also a concern voters have voiced. Many of the California voters surveyed, 37.5 percent, said they fear that they or someone they love could become homeless. That number was particularly high for Latino voters, 47 percent, the survey found. 33 percent of non-Hispanic white voters said they shared that same fear. These results co-exist with nearly half of the state, 44 percent, rating the economy as excellent or good.
Voters also want funds spent on monitoring visible signs of homelessness in their communities, according to the USC poll.
“This new poll provides undisputable evidence that the homelessness crisis is impacting more people, families and communities across the state than ever before,” said USC Price School Dean Jack Knott in a statement. “It’s imperative that we continue to encourage innovative thinking and smart solutions that can help communities create more short- and long-term affordable housing options to address this chronic, vexing problem.”
The USC Price-Schwarzenegger poll on homelessness surveyed 1,000 likely voters in California online from Feb. 1 to Feb. 5. It was fielded by global public opinion and data company YouGov. The margin of error in the study is plus or minus 3.3 percent.