The number of people staying in encampments is growing throughout Los Angeles County and City as the total number of unsheltered people in the region also increases. The visible nature of encampments on neighborhood streets and sidewalks, adjacent to highways, and inside parks has made responding to encampments a prominent and divisive issue across the region. Both the County and City have established distinct approaches for responding to encampments. To understand the Los Angeles encampment ecosystem in early fall 2022, the Abt study team examined the prevalence and characteristics of encampments. The team conducted interviews with leadership from public agencies, law enforcement, homeless service providers, and outreach teams to understand the spectrum of encampment characteristics and response strategies across the Los Angeles region. The research team also reviewed policy documents to guide the County and City’s responses to encampments.
From Policy to Practice: Responses to Homeless Encampments in Los Angeles