LA homelessness jumped 13%, before the pandemic hit

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A homeless encampment in Mar Vista, April 18, 2020. The latest homeless count estimates the county’s homeless population at 66,433, up nearly 13% from last year. Photo by Amy Ta.

New numbers released Friday show that the city and county’s homeless population are still growing, even though Angelenos are spending hundreds of millions of dollars in tax money to fight it. According to the 2020 Greater Los Angeles Homeless Count, at least 66,000 people live on the streets, in shelters and in vehicles in the county, up nearly 13% from last year. In the city, there are now more than 41,000 people experiencing homelessness, a 14% increase.

That’s based on a count conducted in January, before the pandemic. COVID-19 could make things even worse.