LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) – Los Angeles City Council has passed a motion introduced by council-members Kevin de Leon (District 14) and Mitch O’Farrell (District 13) that introduced a plan to expand the Skid Row Clean Team citywide.
The team works to prevent the buildup of debris and trash in Skid Row, a neighborhood in L.A. known for having one the largest homeless populations in America. Councilman de Leon’s district includes Skid Row within its limits.READ MORE: Section Of MacArthur Park To Close To Begin Repairs, Maintenance Work
Now, with the passing of this motion, that team will expand its duties to include other parts of the city. The team, which is operated by a homeless outreach program called Urban Alchemy, is made mostly of people who used to be or are currently homeless.
The motion was presented with requests from both the Board of Public Works, to show the effectiveness of the program has and the practicality of expanding the team citywide, and the City Administrative Officer and Chief Legislative Analyst – for information on potential funding of the team’s expansion.
De Leon has been appreciative of the team’s efforts thus far, “Urban Alchemy has been delivering quality service to the Skid Row community,” he said. “They serve as a model not only for the great work they provide but also for the respect and compassion they offer to members of the unhoused community. I look forward to seeing how their efforts might be expanded to improve more neighborhoods where these services are needed.”READ MORE: Chance Encounter Leads To Life-Changing Moment For Homeless Skid Row Painter Richard Hutchins
Urban Alchemy’s current contract runs through next year, with one-year extension options for the two years to follow.
Councilman O’Farrell echoed de Leon’s sentiments in the success of the program to date, “This program has been effective at
remediating trash and debris while positively engaging with people experiencing homelessness. It is also a source of jobs for those who need it. It is a no-brainer that we would explore expanding this model across the city.”
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