Thursday, January 29, 2009

Random Lengths ~ Homeless in Long Beach

Random Lengths "Harbor Independent News" is a little San Pedro based newspaper published by James Preston Allen. Prior to becoming homeless, it was one of my favorites (picked up free at the Long Beach Public Library) because I found the kind of political news and views not readily available offline.

The Jan 9 ~ 22 issue front page story is "Homeless in Long Beach". The article, by Jillian Sederholm, said Governor Schwartzenegger "...proposed $3.6 billion in cuts to human services programs, with the single biggest cut being the reduction of SSI grants". Sederholm pointed out that this might increase homelessness. The "going rate" for a single apartment in Long Beach is $700. I have mentioned Gilbert who is a non-drinking, non-smoking, non-drug using, 60 year old homeless man. He is neat, clean and every once in a while he has arguments with Aliens, but he is mostly harmless. He is on SSI, but can not even afford a single.

Gilbert and I discussed getting an apartment together. I trust him as far as being responsible bill-payer, yet roommates relationships are hard, without adding mental health issues to mix. In addition two bedroom apartments have increased, so that splitting rent would still make the cost prohibitive.

Interviews with homeless workers in Long Beach confirm that the numbers are increasing. Susan Price, the City of Long Beach Homeless Services Officer cited "100 families and 300 individuals" who became newly homeless in 2008.

Random Lengths website:

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