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Statement from Elise Buik, President & CEO of United Way of Greater Los Angeles

Below is a statement by Elise Buik, President & CEO of United Way of Greater Los Angeles in response to the recent announcement of a State of Emergency on Homelessness in Los Angeles

Since United Way began our efforts to end homelessness in 2007, we have, along with our non-profit partners, been working with elected officials, public sector, philanthropic and business leaders, to build a collaborative public-private partnership to address this crisis.  Over the past four years, our community partners have successfully housed 23,399 chronic and veteran homeless. This work clearly demonstrates that homelessness is a solvable problem, if we make the right strategic investments, specifically in permanent housing. We have also seen unprecedented levels of political will, through the leadership of Mayor Garcetti, key members of City Council, and Supervisors Kuehl & Ridley-Thomas, and their colleagues on the L.A. County Board of Supervisors. United Way applauds the significant commitment that the City of Los Angeles made yesterday of over $100 million in new funding.  We are extremely encouraged and optimistic about this announcement, as it comes at a time of tremendous political leadership at both the City and County. County leadership has dedicated millions of dollars of County resources to end homelessness, through programs like their Flexible Housing Subsidy Pool, and they are in the process of exploring additional strategies and resources that could also be dedicated to the effort. United Way is working collaboratively with the City, County, LAHSA, and Home For Good partners to identify specific and concrete action steps, resources, and policies at both the City and County levels. We look forward to partnering with our elected leaders in the coming months to finalize these integrated strategies to help bring a true end to homelessness for all Angelenos.