Los Angeles County launches Pathway Home for RV encampments

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California Construction News staff writer

Los Angeles County’s new Pathway Home program to resolve encampments, including recreational vehicles (RVs), has placed another 58 people into interim housing and removed 30 dilapidated RVs being used as makeshift dwellings on the streets of unincorporated East Gardena.

After declaring a state of emergency on homelessness in January 2023, the Board of Supervisors authorized efforts to streamline hiring, contracting, purchasing, grants, and real estate processes.

Pathway Home is a critical component of the county’s multi-pronged response to the homelessness emergency declared by the Board of Supervisors earlier this year. Leveraging emergency powers, partnerships with local jurisdictions, and Measure H funding, Pathway Home helps people in encampments by offering them a hotel or motel room or other type of immediately available interim housing.

“Ending homelessness, especially for people living in RVs, requires collaboration with residents, multiple government departments, municipalities, and community partners,” said Supervisor Holly Mitchell. “Pathway Home creates an infrastructure for every entity to quickly work together in fulfilling its unique role in helping to end this crisis.

“We cannot do this without Measure H funding and a sustained urgency for getting every resident off the street and into permanent housing. I look forward to bringing this program to every encampment in the 2nd District and throughout Los Angeles County.”

East Gardena and West Rancho Dominguez have among the highest concentrations of RV encampments countywide. The Pathway Home operation that ran from August 22 through August 24 focused on several streets in a busy industrial area. Following a cleanup, the County is taking steps to prevent the site from being reoccupied.

The County Homeless Initiative incorporated the RV pilot into Pathway Home to scale it up and fast-track it using emergency powers and other resources. This was the second Pathway Home operation overall, but the first to focus on housing people in RVs. The County’s earlier RV-focused operations, under the RV pilot, removed several burned and abandoned RVs from public roadways. The first operation in Lennox on August 9 through August 11 brought 50 people inside, mostly from tents.

Once at interim housing, participants receive supportive services such as on-site case management and connections to physical and mental healthcare, substance use disorder treatment, benefits enrolment, life skills development, and more.

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