, CA — The Greater Los Angeles (GLA) VA Healthcare System is aware that the LA County Sheriff has stated his intent to assess and disband the homeless encampment along the San Vincente fence line of the West Los Angeles Campus on November 1, 2021.
GLA staff have been in frequent contact with these Veterans since the encampment was established in May, 2020 and daily contact since August, 2021. The VA will continue to work with these Veterans to offer alternative housing options and treatment programs.
Today’s encampment includes more than 30 Veterans, some with partners or significant others living in tents with them. Many Veterans and non-Veterans have moved from this encampment into permanent housing and more are scheduled to move into permanent housing in the next few weeks. GLA offers low-barrier-to-entry and emergency sheltering, transitional housing, substance abuse and mental health residential treatment programs, COVID-19 testing, and vaccinations to the Veterans in this encampment.
GLA offers a wide variety of emergency, transitional and permanent housing options through our Community Engagement and Reintegration Services (CERS):
- The Welcome Center: This Community Resource and Referral Center serves as a starting point for Veterans experiencing homelessness who are contacting the VA for the first time. Here, each Veteran’s unique situation is analyzed, and the appropriate CERS program is recommended for each individual in his or her search for housing, medical care, mental health treatment, and other services. In addition to assisting homeless Veterans with long-term needs, the Welcome Center also addresses immediate needs, such as hot showers, laundry services, as well as food and clothing vouchers.
- The Care, Treatment, and Rehabilitative Services (CTRS) Initiative: This initiative provides high-risk Veterans experiencing homelessness with healthcare, case management, peer support, meal services, a clean environment and transitional housing assistance in a designated tenting area on the West Los Angeles Campus. CTRS is a pilot initiative that provides unsheltered homeless Veterans expanded access to VA services during the COVID-19 pandemic. Our goal is to improve unsheltered Veterans’ healthcare outcomes, while guiding them toward permanent housing solutions.
- A Bridge Home: A low-barrier transitional housing program created to assist male Veterans who can independently perform their daily living activities. A Bridge Home is designed to provide participants with stability so that they can more easily maintain contact with VA housing navigation and case management services to facilitate safe and supportive housing placement.
- Domiciliary Residential Rehabilitation Treatment Program: This short-term rehabilitation program provides male and female Veterans experiencing homelessness a chance to learn critical life skills to avoid a return to homelessness. Participants are given access to VA rehabilitation program services such as addiction counseling, spiritual, behavioral, physical, psychosocial, dietary, vocational and occupation therapy, with the purpose to enable the Veterans to return to independent living in their respective communities.
- The HUD-VASH Program: This partnership between the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and the Department of Veterans Affairs – VA Supported Housing (VASH), HUD-VASH assists eligible Veterans and their families with subsidized permanent housing and intensive case management. This program focuses on obtaining safe, affordable, accessible, and permanent housing in a location of the Veteran’s choice. HUD-VASH helps move Veterans and their families out of homelessness and provides support to sustain stabilized independent community living. Case management is essential for success in the HUD-VASH Program and is a requirement for continuing participation after the Veteran is housed.
Veterans can reach the Welcome Center Desk at 310-268-3269. Veterans in Crisis should call 1-800-273-8255 and press 1.
ABOUT VAGLAHS: VAGLAHS is one component of the VA Desert Pacific Healthcare Network (VISN22) offering services to Veterans residing in Southern California. VAGLAHS consists of two ambulatory care centers, a tertiary care facility and eight community-based outpatient clinics. VAGLAHS serves Veterans residing throughout five counties: Kern, Los Angeles, San Luis Obispo, Santa Barbara, and Ventura. There are approximately 1.4 million Veterans in the VAGLAHS service area. For more information, call (310) 268-3340 or visit us at www.losangeles.va.gov. Veterans in need can call the VA hotline toll-free at 877-4-AID-VET.