The Fight For Fair Rent Statement

29 May The Fight For Fair Rent Statement

There’s No More Time, Protect Renters Now!

Los Angeles is embroiled in a severe homelessness crisis, with tens of thousands of individuals experiencing homelessness on any given night. More than 75,000 Angelenos are without shelter each night. Sixty percent of Angelenos are renters. If rents and housing costs continue to rise, many more people will find themselves without shelter. The  Fight for Fair Rents is a grassroots campaign dedicated to housing affordability in Los Angeles, including a 3% annual limit on rent increases to protect tenants. 

The fight for fair housing has been a long and arduous journey marked by struggles, setbacks, and hard-won victories. This decades-long housing crisis has disproportionately impacted Black and Latine residents, highlighting the systemic inequalities and structural barriers that contribute to racial disparities in homelessness. Gentrification, eviction, and homelessness are all, in large part, driven by corporate greed, structural racism, discrimination in housing markets, and ineffective urban development policies. The lack of affordable housing options further entrenches our communities in deep poverty, poor health outcomes, and hopelessness.

From 2017 to 2021, California’s overall senior population grew by 7%. Still, the number of people 55 and over who sought homelessness services increased by 84%—more than any other age group—according to the state’s Homeless Data Integration System. Some seniors have been homeless for years, but the increasing numbers also reflect seniors experiencing homelessness for the first time after age 50. In 2023, half of homeless Californians are over 50 and didn’t earn enough to pay bills. Most participants in the study reported a median household income of $960 a month for six months before finding themselves on the streets.

Among single homeless adults, approximately half are aged 50 and older. Of these, almost half first became homeless after age 50. Adults ages 50 and older who are homeless are experiencing health conditions—including cognitive and functional impairment—20 years earlier than their housed counterparts. They often use costly acute healthcare services and die prematurely.  

Los Angeles renters are part of one of the most important economic centers in the globe. We have a moral imperative to confront the housing affordability and homelessness crises. Together, we can build a future where everyone can live with human dignity, respect, hope, and health regardless of age, race, and economic status. Los Angeles leaders have the opportunity to prevent thousands of Angelenos from becoming homeless by establishing a 3% annual limit on rent increases for tenants. The time is now!

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