Wednesday, 02 January 2013 14:53

The State of the Impoverished in Los Angeles

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2013 has just arrived and Michael Omidi and I hope that in the New Year charities will continue to make a lasting impact on poverty, especially in our home of Los Angeles. In order to measure the impact of the efforts we make we will have to look at the current state of the impoverished in Los Angeles.

Cost of Living and Unemployment

Typically cost of living indices are based on the United States average representing 100, meaning that those areas that have ratings below 100 have a lower cost of living than the US average and those with ratings above 100 have a higher cost of living.

Overall the city of Los Angeles had a rating of 144 at the end of 2012. This rating weighs cost of living in this manner:
• 30% accounted for by housing costs
• 15% accounted for by the cost of food and groceries
• 10% for transportation
• 13% for health care and utilities
• 32% for miscellaneous expenses such as entertainment, clothing, and services

In 2012 the unemployment rate hovered around 11%, above the average unemployment rate for the nation, which was roughly 8.1%. This jobless rate was down from 12% in 2011 but the drop was primarily due to people dropping out of the labor force altogether, a trend which was common throughout many parts of the nation.

Hunger and Homelessness

The most recent statistics regarding hunger in Los Angeles found that approximately 1.7 million individuals within Los Angeles County suffered with hunger.

Los Angeles also has one of the highest homeless populations in the nation, with approximately 254,000 men, women, and children experiencing homelessness at some point during the year. It is estimated that on any given night there are 82,000 people in Los Angeles County that are homeless.

Additional statistics regarding homelessness in Los Angeles show that:
• The single population of homeless in Los Angeles is predominately male, making up about 75%.
• About one-fifth of the homeless population is disabled physically.
• One-quarter of the homeless population is mentally ill.
• 48% have graduated from high school and 32% have a bachelor degree or higher.

What We Can Do

With over 17% of the population in Los Angeles living below poverty there is a great deal of work to be done. Luckily there are numerous organizations and charities throughout Los Angeles that support the impoverished whether those individuals are hindered by the high cost of living, hunger, homelessness, or joblessness. Just a few of the charities that provide support in these areas include:
Homelessness in Los Angeles County – Upward Bound House is one organization that provides shelter for the homeless in Santa Monica and is a charity that we at No More Poverty support. Additional homeless shelter for the area includes Los Angeles Youth Network and the Salvation Army. You can find a list of homeless shelters through the Homeless Shelter Directory.
Hunger Charities in LA – The Children’s Hunger Fund helps those suffering from hunger nationally and internationally as well as those who need assistance in Los Angeles. The Los Angeles Regional Food Bank also fights hunger in the area.
Employment Assistance – Los Angeles has many charities that assist in employment and career development. Some of these charities include the United Way of Greater Los Angeles and the Beyond Shelter organization. Additionally the state provides an Employment Development Department to assist in this area.

In the coming year we will be assisting more charities in their efforts to aid those suffering from poverty in the Los Angeles area and with your help we can make a significant impact on the lives of those living right here in LA.


Read 1616 times Last modified on Thursday, 31 January 2013 18:28

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