Homeless crisis on the West Coast America

The Skid Row area of downtown Los Angeles is home to thousands of chronically homeless people. Poverty, despair and drugs are endemic.

The U.S. homeless population increased this year for the first time since 2010, driven by a surge in the number of people living on the streets in Los Angeles and other West Coast cities, including San Diego, the San Francisco Bay Area, Portland and


San Francisco

A homeless man sleeps in front of his tent along Van Ness Avenue in downtown San Francisco on June, 27, 2016.

L.A.’s Midnight Mission

People sleep in the courtyard of the Midnight Mission in Los Angeles on Sept. 14, 2017. The mission’s courtyard is open to any homeless people looking for a safe place to spend the night.

San Diego

A woman looks over trash from an encampment for homeless people along the San Diego River in San Diego on Sept. 22, 2017.

In October 2017, California declared a statewide emergency due to a hepatitis A outbreak linked to homeless encampments like this one.

San Francisco

Andrew Loy begs along a sidewalk in downtown San Francisco on June, 28, 2016. Homelessness is on the rise in the city, which has some of the highest housing costs in the nation.

Los Angeles’ Skid Row

Bearing cuts all over his face, a homeless drug addict, who said his name is April Jane, aimlessly staHomeless woman

A homeless woman sets up a barricade in front of her tent near Skid Row in downtown Los Angeles on June 20, 2017. Advocates say “single women,” a term referring to women on their own, often separated from spouses or children, make up the fastest growing group in the homeless population of Los Angeles.Portland, Oregon

Cheyvonne Price, who says she is homeless primarily due to heroin addiction, naps on a sidewalk outside a Starbucks in downtown Portland on Sept. 20, 2017, after spending a night outside on the streets trying to keep dry in the rain. Price said she hoped to get enough money during the day to afford a bed at a hostel for the night and said that she wishes people would realize that the Los Angeles

Carrying plastic bags stuffed with his belongings, a homeless man, who declined to give his name, pauses on a sidewalk on Sept. 21, 2017, in Los Angeles.

According to the annual count released in May 2017 by the Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority, the county had a homeless population of  57,794, up 23 percent from last year’s count.Seeking shelter

Wearing a “Make America Great Again” hat, Nathanael Baisley, 38, sits in a bus in Los Angeles en route to Santa Monica Beach to spend the night, on Oct. 28, 2017. Baisley said he has been homeless on and off for three years and is going through a divorce with his wife, who lives in England with their 5-year-old son.Los Angeles

Cars pass the encampment of a man who’s been homeless for about two years on May 1, 2017 in Los Angeles, California.

The 2017 Greater Los Angeles Homeless Count indicates a 20 percent jump in the city of Los Angeles, while L.A. County spiked 23 percent.

Homeless veteran

Homeless veteran Kendrick Bailey steps out of his tent on a street corner near Skid Row in downtown Los Angeles on June 20, 2017.

After dropping some 30 percent from 2015 to 2016, the population of homeless veterans living on L.A. streets increased in the official 2017 count to 4,828 from 3,071. Los Angeles’ Skid Row

A homeless man sleeps curled up on the steps of a police station in Los Angeles’ Skid Row area, home to the nation’s largest concentration of homeless people, on Sept. 19, 2017.

Homelessness has increased on the West Coast as soaring housing costs price more people out of the market.

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