100 signatures reached
To: Los Angeles City Mayor, Karen Bass, the Office of Skid Row Strategies, and LA City Council District 14
Make 6th & San Pedro a Skid Row Climate Center Location!
"Skid Row Cooling Resources" began Fall of 2020 as a grassroots planning and advocacy effort in response to a brutal September heatwave to make sure resources like hydration and shade were provided at the street level following the summer in Skid Row.
A March 31, 2021 Request for Support was well received in LA City Hall and (4) "Cooling Stations" with canopies arrived on the streets in July 2021 and remained through the start of October 2021. Each cooling station consisted of two pop-up tent canopies: one of which was the "Misting Tent" with chairs to sit in the shade, and the other had a "Water Bar" which provided cups of filtered water with ice as well as other cold snacks, and each station was managed 24/7 by Urban Alchemy workers.
As a Pilot Program, these cooling stations were massively successful - especially the location on 6th & San Pedro St. Unfortunately, the funding for the following year was cut in half so the number of cooling stations for Summer 2022 was dropped to (2) locations, and the program was renamed "Climate Centers." The location at 6th & San Pedro was one of the locations cut even though the metrics showed it had served the largest number of people the year before.
Advocacy efforts to get back to the original (4) locations began in early 2023. A CAO Report from the City Administrative Officer dated May 12, 2023 shows $2,492,414 budgeted for for the continuation of the program "Climate Centers (Cooling/Warming) Centers" (#16 on Page 5) in CD-14, approved by the LA City Mayor and LA City Council on June 23, 2023 for the new fiscal year, beginning July 1, 2023.
HISTORY / SOURCES:
1. CAO Report: https://clkrep.lacity.org/onlinedocs/2020/20-1524-S1_rpt_cao_05-12-2023.pdf
2. "As the heatwave smothers LA, Skid Row has one cooling station" [7/17/23] LA Public Press: https://lapublicpress.org/2023/07/as-the-heatwave-smothers-la-skid-row-has-one-cooling-station/
3. "Exclusive: Skid Row’s Life-Saving Warming Stations Delayed for Months" [2/15/23] LA Mag: https://www.lamag.com/citythinkblog/exclusive-skid-rows-life-saving-warming-stations-delayed-for-months/
4. "City of Los Angeles Mail - Cooling_Warming Center" [1/5/23 - 1/9/23] https://www.scribd.com/document/626045580/City-of-Los-Angeles-Mail-Cooling-Warming-Center#
5x the amount of funding has been allocated & approved.....so where are the 2023 Climate Centers?
Why is this important?
As of today [August 1, 2023] there is (1) "Climate Center" located on Towne Ave across from the HHCLA ReFresh Spot. This location has been up nearly year-round so it's not new, nor is it in the area with the highest foot traffic (highest need). This is not sufficient for the thousands of Skid Row residents who struggle with water insecurity. Even with the (6) public-use water fountains and (3) WaterBox devices (located inside private organizations so, not public-use), they are often dirty or broken so the unhoused, housing-insecure, and otherwise low-income Skid Row residents are forced to rely on bottled water given by infrequent volunteer groups or other, more unhealthy, illegal, and potentially dangerous solutions like tapping into fire hydrants.
The (4) cooling center locations from Summer 2021 were a huge hit, yet funding for the next year was halved and the (2) centers approved for Summer 2022 were placed in remote locations. The metrics speak for themselves, and the Skid Row community wants the original (4) "Climate Center" locations back for Summer 2023, including (and especially) the location at 6th & San Pedro St.
IF YOU CURRENTLY LIVE OR WORK IN SKID ROW, LOS ANGELES: Please sign this petition and join us in telling the offices of LA City Mayor, Karen Bass; Skid Row Strategies Director, Jarvis Emerson; and LA City Councilmember, Kevin DeLeon to 1) expedite the implementation of the APPROVED 2023 "Climate Center" program in Skid Row, and 2) one of the four locations should be at the corner of 6th & San Pedro St.