The True Homeless Situation: Business Owner Informs Santa Monica City Council
Remarks given to council by John Alle within the allotted 2 minutes could not possibly cover the subject
January 16, 2022
Good evening City Manager and Council:
Your "OUTREACH & HYGIENE SERVICES REPORT" is incorrect with regard to the number of unhoused, number of functioning restrooms, and outreach services. More than half of the toilets and sinks or restrooms in the garages are not functional.
The Garages continue to be sleeping quarters and toilets for the unhoused. They serve as places for drug use and sex.
Today in the Dumpster Room of Garage 6 there was a pool of blood. Blood stains on the floor remain. I have photos and video clips to verify.
You promised months ago you would obtain bids for security gates for all Garages.
Nothing. No response from my follow-up.
You have not responded to the letters of concern from the doctors from the UC system who warned of possible disease from human waste and needles left in the garages.
My group conducted all night counts of the unhoused - one day in November and one day this month.
We counted an average of 2,025 men and women - a ratio of 46% female and the rest male, in our Downtown, City parks and garages.
PEOPLE CONCERN says SAMOSHEL is closed until next Monday. It has 72 beds, but last night when I attempted to get 3 people there, they could not accept anyone more. There were 67 people in tents and without blankets outside. Some inside complained they had been preyed upon, and felt safer on the street. Conditions under the tent were horrid.
Not much has improved since 2019 when Council last funded People Concern to be the service provider.
On the Promenade, we maintained our average of three smashed storefronts per month. Car tires continue to be slashed.
Things are worse.
Another month has passed since Councilmembers Parra, Negrete and Brock requested information from Staff about outreach services.
It is cold and rainy. People are dying on our streets.
Until we increase the number of cops back up to the number it was at, AND establish an interim homeless shelter (preferably in the vacant underutilized former Fisher Lumber building at the southeast corner of 14th St. and Colorado Av), our residents and tourists will stay away.
Our Downtown and Parks are not safe or clean.
In the final Item 14 Public Input time allotment, I also reminded the Council and City Manager that I had formally offered my + - 3,000 square foot space at 1331 3rd Street Promenade to the City, free of charge for 1 or 2 years for a Police Substation, perhaps even shared as a "community outreach center", etc. The space and restrooms are ADA compliant, fit for internet, with lots of room for bicycle and equipment storage.
The only person who graciously said thanks and came to look and talk, was Police Chief Ramon Batista.
There was no interest, acknowledgment, etc., following my comments at the end of the Council Meeting, then about 3:15 am. In fact, I was cut off and muted.