Friday, October 7, 2011
Downtown Los Angeles - a few hours in photos
Today I spent the afternoon downtown. As I typically do, I took a few photos with my cellphone.
One reason I was in the area of skid row on this particular day and time was to count people. Not for some survey or study. I count people so I can try to wrap my head around what this economy is doing to so many people in our nation. If the government tells you things are getting better they are not telling the truth, by an even wider margin than one can begin to imagine.
This was the first Friday of a new calendar quarter. I count the people in the same area on the same day (as long as it is not raining which can impact the count) in the same afternoon to early evening time frame.
In 2010 for the last quarter start there were 216 people. In 2011 there were 491. Things are not getting better.
More families, children, young people than ever before.
If you wish to help, and you CAN help in many ways, please go to www.urm.org for more information.
More photos if you select the "read more" link
The King Edward Hotel and Bar
Engine Company 23 in 1925
Engine Company 23 Historic firehouse downtown on 5th street October 7, 2011. A few yards away from the Los Angeles Mission. In close proximity there is Union Rescue Mission and Midnite Mission. They are the three largest. In the same area. There is also the LAMP center (seen in the movie The Soloist / Nathaniel Ayres), the Weingart Center Fred Jordan Mission and others. Not surprising as Los Angeles has the highest homeless population in the nation.
Hotel Panama. An SRO Hotel in the heart of skid row
My favorite place downtown with my favorite folks. I cannot say enough about them
The new roof area at Union Rescue Mission was completed a few weeks ago. There are areas to sit, the view is lovely (just don't look straight down over one side of the building as you will be looking at San Julian Street, the most violent street in Los Angeles). There is also a garden area on the roof as well and gas fireplace areas to sit and try to forget where you are at a hard time in your life for many folks.
In the case of police, as I have shown in many other shots, there are generally 3-5+ police cars for almost every event. In most areas of the city when there is a problem you see one paramedic van and perhaps a fire truck. On skid row you see two paramedic trucks most often. Many times it was something like a knife fight and they do not want to put the two folks who were fighting in the same van.
I generally start from Pershing square and walk toward skid row from there
Some of the most wealthy corporations in the world, some of the most opulent loft living, some of the finest hotels and restaurants are a few moments walk from people sleeping on the street.
If you wish to see more of the pieces I have written on the homeless in Los Angeles just follow this link: