Prop. H Activists March on Hollywood to House and Help the Homeless

by Ross Plesset Story /Robert S Lowden Photos Wednesday, Mar. 01, 2017 at 1:09 PM
rlowden@earthlink.net

Photos are of the Yes on H March for the Homeless accompanied by ones of homeless people in downtown L.A by Robert Stuart Lowden. Measure H, if passed on March 7, would generate about $350 million, which would go to housing, “mental health, substance abuse treatment, health care, education, job training, rental subsidies, emergency and affordable housing, transportation, outreach, prevention, and supportive services for homeless children, families, foster youth, veterans, battered women, seniors, disabled individuals, and other homeless adults.” (Source: Monday Night Mission LA on Cloud9.)

Prop. H Activists Ma...
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Photo Set 1-http://la.indymedia.org/news/2017/03/295049.php

Photo Set 2-http://la.indymedia.org/news/2017/03/295069.php

Photo Set 3_ http://la.indymedia.org/news/2017/03/295089.php

On the ballot this March 7 will be Measure H, which would provide around $350 million annually (via a .25 cent sales tax) for homeless prevention, housing, medical supplies, and more*.

February 25, 2017: The Yes on H March for the Homeless was organized by Monday Night Mission and LA on Cloud9. On Saturday afternoon, approximately 200 passionate people turned out in front of the Hollywood and Vine Red Line station. The crowd was diverse both ethnically and age-wise (there were young children, young adults and people with wisdom hair).

The ensuing march went on sidewalks, which in my mind is preferable to having streets closed off. In the latter arrangement, demonstrators tend to be isolated from the public and at the mercy of whatever the media decides to report (or not report). Many motorists saw us, and we passed the Pantages Theatre just as a big crowd was leaving. The theatergoers had to exit in a small stream because of us, and they got good views of our signs. There was one reported positive interaction between a participant and a handicapped theater patron.

Later in the march, a sidewalk pedestrian asked me to explain the march and Measure H as he video'd me with his phone-camcorder.

One criticism expressed about the event was that no homeless people seemed to be participating. Also, Hollywood Boulevard tends to be frequented by tourists, and we were promoting a local measure. (Albeit, one goal of the march was to get attention from the Academy Awards, which was being set up nearby.)

After passing the Pantages, we went up Hollywood to Highland (were the Academy Awards ceremony was being prepared), then crossed the boulevard, were we doubled back until stopping just past Ripley's Believe It or Not and the adjacent McDonald's. We started wrapping up at 6, two hours after we'd gathered.

One participant was there in solidarity with homeless LGBTQ, many of whom are ostracized by their families.

As we were crossing the street at Hollywood and Highland, a motorist, apparently irate about being delayed, drove his car over the crosswalk and into the demonstrators. No one was actually hit, fortunately. One of us pounded on his hood. A policeman, who'd been helping direct the crowd, came over to his window and spoke with him. Yet the motorist lunged forward again, this time I was in his path. Hopefully, someone had a camcorder going and/or got his license plate number. I saw no sign that he was arrested as I think he should've been. On the man's dashboard was an article of clothing that said Chicago Police.

But the adversity faced by the demonstrators--e.g., cold weather and having a car charge at us--didn't seem like much considering the outrageous injustice we're facing: homelessness that's increasingly ubiquitous. Maybe our barbaric society can be made a little less barbaric with Measure H?


*Here is a more comprehensive list of services that Measure H would fund (provided by the event organizers): “Mental health, substance abuse treatment, health care, education, job training, rental subsidies, emergency and affordable housing, transportation, outreach, prevention, and supportive services for homeless children, families, foster youth, veterans, battered women, seniors, disabled individuals, and other homeless adults.” More information here:http://voteyesonh.com/