Free Los Angeles Homeless Essay Sample
Los Angeles, in California is ranked as the second largest city in the United States after the New York City. According to the United States census bureau, Los Angeles is estimated to have a population of about 4 million people. It is a diverse city and boasts to have several sites such as the famous Beverly Hill, Hollywood, Griffith Observatory, and Walt Disney Concert Hall to name a few. Its beauty is believed to have contributed to its naming as the the city of angels. However, the city and the city dwellers are faced with predicaments that negate the beauty of the name angels.
The cases of homelessness have dramatically increased over the years and have brought more effect to the society in the 20th century. According to the Los Angeles Times, November 26, 2014, statistics show that about 54,000 people in Los Angeles city as announced by officials in 2013 were homeless. This report records a 15% increase from the previous findings of the last two years. It is thus evident that homelessness has become a serious social problem that faces communities living in Los Angeles. Despite the fact that everyone deserves a decent place to call home, this is not the case in Los Angeles. The society is thus faced with a number of questions that require to be answered. These questions include; why are there so many homeless individuals in Los Angeles? What causes people to become homeless? What life do homeless people lead? What can be done to help the homeless?
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Some of the factors that can be attributed to the cause of homelessness include mental illness, substances abuse and addiction. The most notorious types of addiction in this case are drugs and alcohol. An addiction of drugs and alcohol is known to disrupt peoples consciousness to an extent that a person is unable to control his/her bad behavior. Individuals who have an addiction to drugs cannot be able to take care of themselves or their families. Additionally, an alcoholic loses focus and will probably neglect his work. If he or she is fired, the eventual result is homelessness since he/she is left with no source of income. Moreover, if one engages themselves in gambling activities their lives are likely to change dramatically. Gambling addiction can also change peoples lives. When people lose their money through gambling activities, they may also end up being homeless. According to the Christian Science Monitor survey conducted by the International Union of Gospel Missions nearly 1 in 5 homeless men and women cite gambling as a cause of their homelessness.
The major common risks that may expose people to homelessness include unemployment, job loss, and poverty. The link between poverty and homelessness is evident on the fact that people need basic supplies so as to support life. In order to have a better life, individuals need to make money that will help them afford education, medical care, and healthy food. According to a report on the 2007 American economic crisis, the middle-class and low-level income families were the worst hit in terms of finding employment. According to CNN, the unemployment rates rose dramatically from 6.7% to 7.2% in only one month. This unfortunate event forced majority of the low-income families to the streets since they could not afford to pay their rent.
Mental illness and physical abuse is also a contributing factor to homelessness. It is clear that some people are naturally born with aggressive diseases that have no cure. The middle-class and low income families can hardly afford to cater for the expensive medical bills for containing such ailments and thus end up abandoning their sick family members in the street. Post traumatic effects and subsequent loss of ability to work which are common in military veterans are also a reason for ending up sleeping in the streets. According to the national coalition for the homeless, 6% of the American population suffers from mental illness. Consequently, the number rises to about 20% to 25% among the homeless population. Additionally, individuals who suffer from either physical or sexual abuse by their family members or parent during their childhood may choose to flee to the streets.
The homeless in general may lead to a number of social problems. They many at times portray unnecessary aggressiveness and thus render to be dangerous in some instances. These individuals may also be unable to control their bad behavior and may turn into violence and crime. The main driving force in committing crime and harming other innocent citizens is looking for means of getting food or money to sustain their lives. Some cases of stealing can be interpreted as ways of finding means for acquiring free healthcare since prisoners are taken care of by the government.
It is unsafe for any individual to sleep in the streets. Housing is a vital element that offers protection to human beings. The homeless are hence faced with various challenges such as exposure to diseases, horrible livelihood, and vulnerability to harsh weather conditions. The worst seasons are acknowledged as the winter and summer. During summer, cases of heat strokes may be experienced while in the winter season individuals may freeze to death. Moreover, if the homeless contract diseases brought by unfavorable weather conditions, these diseases are likely to spread fast among these people. Lack of medical care to curb the spread of communicable diseases and lack of treatment may also lead to the death of the homeless.
The question of what the society can do to help with the problem of homelessness can be answered in one simple response. The availability of a homeless service authority in California is big boost to helping the homeless. This service provides shelter, food and education to the people without homes. The best action that the society should take is to join hands with the homeless service authority and participate fully towards catering for those that lack homes.
In conclusion, it is evident that the problem of homelessness in Los Angeles has been rising. It is clear that this problem cannot be solved at once but it is a process that requires gradual and systematic changes. The entire community should thus join hands with the relevant authorities in order to either directly or indirectly support the homeless or give them shelter. It is also essential that the society understands how to cater for the mentally disturbed homeless people by either offering them physiological assistance or referring them to the relevant professionals. If the entire community joins hands in reducing homelessness in Los Angeles, the city will indeed be a city of angels.