Dozens of apartments designated for homeless veterans in Los Angeles remain unoccupied two months after their inauguration, with conflicting reports about the reasons for the delay. Out of 120 new apartments at the West Los Angeles VA Medical Center, only 42 are occupied, despite an escalating homeless crisis in the city.
- The Veterans Affairs campus in West Los Angeles opened 120 new apartments in May, aimed at housing homeless veterans, but only a third are currently occupied.
- Discrepancies between various agencies are leading to confusion about why these apartments are still vacant. The VA states that they are waiting for final inspections and approval of veteran applications, while the City and County claim that most applications have already been approved.
- The VA was obliged to create 1,200 housing units on the campus following a lawsuit from the ACLU in 2015, but the project has been significantly delayed.
- Los Angeles has the highest percentage of unhoused veterans in the U.S. with 3,456 identified in the Department of Housing and Urban Development’s 2022 count.
- The West LA VA campus also houses several “tiny home” shelters, which are not considered permanent housing, and which have faced their own challenges, including a damaging fire in September 2022.