Today, supporters of the so-called Neighborhood Integrity Initiative (Measure S) announced that they had gathered enough signatures to place their measure on the ballot. As homeless service providers and builders of affordable housing, we are concerned that those of you who have signed their petitions may not fully appreciate the consequences of the Neighborhood Integrity Initiative (Measure S) before adding your public support to it.
We have researched the initiative – and believe it will be disastrous to our efforts to build and supply affordable housing, address the growing problem of homelessness, and make our city a more livable place for all Angelenos.
We spend every day trying to address these issues. This misguided initiative will make our mission far more difficult, and put solutions to the growing problem of homelessness and housing scarcity further out of our reach.
Over 28,000 Angelenos are homeless on any given night. Over 250,000 households pay 50% or more of their income on rent and are one financial hardship away from homelessness. Our city desperately needs more affordable and homeless housing.
We understand there are problems in the Los Angeles planning process that need to be fixed – but this ballot-box legislation goes too far and hurts the neediest among us. The Neighborhood Integrity Initiative (Measure S) will ban the building of virtually all housing, including 90% of all planned opportunity sites for affordable and permanent supportive housing projects. Restricting the housing supply any further will have a disproportionate impact on those struggling to stay afloat, either to make monthly rent or find an affordable place to live.
That is why so many in our community – dozens of homeless service groups, tenant right organizations, affordable housing advocates, and the United Way, among many others – have publicly opposed this initiative.
We are on the front lines of the affordability and homeless crisis in Los Angeles. We are aware of the problems and challenges facing our city – and that is why we are opposing the Neighborhood Integrity Initiative (Measure S).
When you add your signature to a ballot measure, it really matters. And supporting this issue will hurt people experiencing homeless, working families, and those under struggling to pay their rent.
Please reconsider your support of this initiative.
Homeless Advocates Serving Los Angeles
Mike Alvidrez, Executive Director, Skid Row Housing Trust*
Elise Buik, CEO, United Way
Stephanie Klasky-Gamer, CEO, LA Family Housing*
John Maceri, CEO, LAMP Community/Ocean Park Community Center*
Anne Miskey, CEO, Downtown Women’s Center
Adam Murray, Executive Director, Inner City Law Center
Herb Smith, President & CEO, Los Angeles Mission*
*Titles for Identification Purposes