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Life-Saving Winter Shelter Program Returns

Man in a Winter Shelter

On November 1, the Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority (LAHSA) officially kicked off the Winter Shelter Program for the 2022–2023 winter season. The Winter Shelter Program is a life-saving effort that offers several temporary emergency shelters that provide a warm place to sleep, food, and access to supportive services and housing assistance to our unsheltered neighbors and their pets.

Funded by the city and county of Los Angeles, LAHSA is offering 143 beds at five sites to help people experiencing homelessness escape winter weather. These beds will operate 24 hours a day through March 2023. LAHSA contracts with several non-profit service providers to manage the emergency shelters at multiple locations throughout Los Angeles County.

This year, LAHSA is debuting a new innovative Augmented Winter Shelter Program (AWSP), which will provide motel vouchers to people experiencing unsheltered homelessness in parts of the County experiencing severe weather. The AWSP will provide 142 motel vouchers per day for people experiencing unsheltered homelessness in the city of Los Angeles and 367 motel vouchers per day for people experiencing unsheltered homelessness across the rest of Los Angeles County.

The innovation in the AWSP comes from its usage of motel vouchers during severe weather. Once a severe weather event is declared, all the emergency hotel vouchers can be deployed to the regions of the county experiencing the severe weather event. This innovation will allow LAHSA to serve the portions of the County that experience the most severe weather but do not have a traditional winter shelter facility.

“This year, we are re-envisioning the Augmented Winter Shelter Program to ensure that we focus resources where our unsheltered neighbors need them most. Our new model addresses the number of fixed beds that often went unused, many nights and redirects those resources where extreme weather makes staying on the street the most untenable,” said Stephen David Simon, Interim Executive Director at LAHSA. “These new adjustments will further enhance the purpose of the Winter Shelter Program: to save lives.”

LAHSA and its partners will activate the new AWSP when:

The National Weather Service (NWS) forecast calls for three (3) days of low daytime temperatures accompanied by night wind chill temperatures of 32 degrees or less.

If successful, the AWSP could serve as a model for helping people experiencing unsheltered homelessness during other periods of emergency response, for instance, extreme heat, earthquakes, floods, or fires.

The Winter Shelter Program started on November 1, 2022. Any person who needs a winter shelter bed or wants a motel voucher during inclement weather should contact 211 to receive a referral.

List of 2022–2023 Winter Shelter Site Locations



A blog from the Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority

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