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Venice Update

News of Venice, CA and Marina del Rey CA

Who would choose such a way to live?

The rain has cleaned the sidewalks and the streets. Sanitation or the Venice BID Clean team has cleaned the trash, except bulky items. There are toilets, cleaning station, fresh water and showers available on 3rd Ave, which is centrally located. The tents are lined up in a row with probably six feet from one opening to the other. One man is out looking thru the trash for cans. Just down the street is the Venice Bridge Home. One can see thru the fence and see that no one there is in the rain.

Allison Wilhite, Venice Deputy for th Bridge Home, said for every one selected for the Bridge Home, there were more than three who also wanted to go. Three backups for everyone selected. Amazing. This writer encounter only one person who said he would go to the Bridge Home. Just goes to show that people really do want help.

Now with the Federal and State working with the Cities to house these people, perhaps, the photos above will go into the history books soon. Who would choose such a way to live? Today the answer looks like no one.

BID Statistics for February; Gets Large Dumpster for Bulky Items

Clean and Safe teams are coordinating with LA Sanitation to clean up the bulky items. The Venice BID has been hampered by their ability to pick up bulky items because of their capacity to dispose of them. LA Sanitation provided them with a 40-yard dumpster. Now the bulky items will start to disappear.

Clean team is on duty 7 days a week from 7 am to 6 pm; Safe team works from 6:30 to 10:30 pm.

City Opens Emergency Shelters, Works with State, Federal to House Homeless, Priority to Seniors

Oakwood Recreation Center is to open to house those on the street. In addition bathrooms are being distributed to areas of homelessness. Fourth St got an ADA bathroom. Penmar Park has a hand washing station and a fresh water dispenser. It is assumed other facilities are forthcoming.

Third Ave maintains the two bathrooms and hand washing station along with the attendant from 7 am to 7 pm. Showers come twice a week. Third has the fresh water dispenser. Bulky items still prevail.

Only one tenter remains on Lincoln Blvd.

There was only one tenter at the Lincoln encampment that use to wrap from the front to the north side and be filled with tenters. When asked where everyone was, the one tenter said they had all gone to the shelter. It is assumed that is the Bridge Home shelter, which they all said they would not go to.

This from the Office of Councilman Mike Bonin as the City mobilizes to house the homeless,

As part of a continuing effort to halt the spread of the coronavirus, Mayor Eric Garcetti has ordered the use of 42 city facilities to temporarily house people experiencing homelessness. Five of those facilities are on the Westside.

The temporary shelter at the Westwood Recreation Center will open as soon as later today. In the coming days, shelters are expected to open at the Westchester Recreation Center, the Pacific Palisades Recreation Center, the Oakwood Recreation Center, and the Cheviot Hills Recreation Center. All of these sites are designated emergency centers used in the case of natural disasters, such as fires and earthquakes. Additionally, the emergency winter shelter at the West LA Armory will remain open until at least April 20.

These actions are happening while Governor Gavin Newsom works to implement a plan to house the unhoused in hotels and motels across the state. Under the plan, the state would lease the property and local counties would control the operations. According to the governor’s office, they have identified 950 sites in 53 counties.

Mayor Garcetti’s order to use city facilities is part of a broad and multi-faceted effort to protect the public health and prevent the further spread of the coronavirus. Public health officials have warned that people living on the streets are tremendously susceptible to contracting the virus, and have urged local governments to move people inside swiftly.

People designated by the Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority as most vulnerable and most at-risk, especially people over 55 or suffering from other ailments, will have top priority for the available beds. Beds will be spaced more than 6 feet apart to adhere to social distancing guidelines. City departments will provide the beds, personal hygiene kits, and showers. Government agencies and nonprofits will provide meals. The facilities will provide rigorous health monitoring, be open 24 hours per day, provide storage, and have full-time staff, including social workers and security. LADOT will provide transportation to the shelters.

LAFD Emergency Medical Technicians and other street medicine providers are assigned to each new facility to screen clients upon intake, monitor the health of program participants on an ongoing basis, and escalate health concerns using established protocols to move clients to higher levels of care. If someone tests positive for COVID-19 in one of the new or existing shelter settings, they will be triaged into an isolation unit, where they would be treated by the healthcare system.

As federal, state, county and city governments respond to this widening crisis, information is changing rapidly. Some of the designated sites are subject to change. We will do our best to keep you updated with the latest information. For more information about the City of Los Angeles’ response to the novel coronavirus crisis, please visit https://corona-virus.la/.

Thank you for your partnership as we work together to get through this crisis.

Toilets, Hand Washing Station, and Showers on 3rd Ave

Two Toilets, one ADA compliant, with a hand washing station and showers are on 3rd Ave in Venice courtesy of Urban Alchemy.

Toilets — two– will remain with a hand washing station from 7 am to 7 pm and a cleaner. This morning it is Randall. Showers are there from 9 to 1 pm. It appears the City is using all kinds of services to provide the toilets and showers to 3rd Ave. According to the City the toilets will be there 7 to 7, seven days a week. Today and tomorrow it will be Urban Alchemy serving people.

It is all rather confusing because they call themselves the clean team and are also picking up trash but they are not part of the Venice Bid Clean Team. This team cannot pick up hazardous waste, only trash. Meanwhile, there is no ADA compliance. Bulky item trash is stacked up at the north end of 3rd Ave at Rose and has been there since at least Thursday.

Photo was taken Monday, 16 March and has been this way since Thursday of last week. This is bulky item trash.

Mayor Closes Bars, Dine-in Restaurants, Entertainment Venues, Gyms and Fitness

Coronavirus Isolation Causes Panic Buying at Costco, Lincoln and Washington

Line at Costco parking lot Saturday, 14 March, 7:30 am. Store opens at 9 am.  This is the west end of parking lot.

One lady in front of this writer at Costco Starbucks, Lincoln and Washington, said store was crazy Friday. She was a vendor and they knocked down her booth. She said one lady claimed that she had been in line since 3 am. Lady behind this writer in line for coffee said she heard one person say that they had spent the night in line. It rained all night!

Yesterday at Trader Joes, this writer was a little earlier than usual, and asked if this was panic buying since many of the shelves were bare and there were more people. The cashier said “yes.” When giving me change, he thanked me for not being a panic buyer.

This writer doesn’t panic. Have invited all friends to bring a book over, snuggle, and sit by the fire. It is quiet time.

On the door is a sign that says “Bring your own toilet paper and paper towel donations would be appreciated.”

So much for isolation.

Orson Bean Celebration of Life, Scheduled for Saturday, 14 March Has Been Postponed

Alley Bean and family have just come out with a release that the Orson Bean Celebration of Life, scheduled for Saturday, 14 March has been postponed for a later date.

Announcement by the family:

Dear Friends,

I know that we just emailed you that we were preceding to celebrate Orson in a smaller group with a livestream to you all, but on further thought and after a family meeting just now, we have decided, as a family, to postpone the memorial.

We do this with respect and love for so, so many people who would not have been able to be there, and who we know loved Orson as we do. And also with respect for the health officials asking us all, basically, not to gather at this time.

As soon as we can, we will pick another date, when the world is a happier place. And we’ll cheer and yell and celebrate together the life of Orson Bean!

Please pass the word on to anyone you think may need to receive this message.

Again, with a full heart,

Alley and the entire Bean family

SEC Zone Started Monday As Originally Planned

Allison Wilhite, deputy for the Venice Bridge Home, says the Special Enforcement and Cleaning Zone (SECZ) started Monday, 9 March.  Just an hour or so ago Venice Update reported Update didn’t know when the SEC Zone would start because Update was not answered when it queried.

This is a new project.  Everyone is working to make the home for the 154 people feel like a home where they are safe, fed, and free to get off addiction, free to get a job, free to start their life all over.  That opened for people to start moving  in the 25tth of February — two weeks from last Monday.  It should be filled this week.

Monday, 9 March, the SECZ started as planned.

Since then it has been a mad house to get the other things working that have been planned for the SECZ.  It appears to be an hour-by-hour  story as the services unfold.

Update just reported a story of the 3rd Ave as one of the worst streets.  Apparently, a Care Team has been on the street Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and coming up this Friday to pick up needles, trash, hazardous waste.  Friday a team will be there to enforce LAMC 56,11, which should take most of the debris.

The police cannot enforce the tents down rule because of the rain.  But, Update, has been assured that there is a car with two police men assigned to the SEC zone.

Once again the following explains the enhanced services provided to the area.  It does take time for all services to start and get moving.



If Venice had a “Street of Shame,” it would be 3rd Ave this week

Oh, my goodness. Third Ave in Venice breaks all the rules — the sidewalk ADA rule to allow 36 inches for wheelchairs, the bulky item (LAMC 56.11) of fitting into a 60-gallon trash can, and over the curb taking parking to name only what this writer sees.

The unwritten law of putting trash in front of and at the side of single-family residences on 3rd and Rose is just rude and contemptible.

There is a sign that says there will be a “Major Cleanup” Friday, the 13th. All of this should go. Signs are usually posted for cleanup on Fridays. They have never specified a “major” cleanup. But a “major” one is necessary.

Perhaps, this will signal the start of the SEC zone, which 3rd Ave is definitely in.  Update will be taking photos Friday to make sure this is all removed and cleaned.

Do not know when the SECZ will become effective

Venice Update has both called and emailed Allison Wilhite, Venice deputy for the Bridge Home, to see when the enforcement of the SEC zone will start. It was announced earlier that it was suppose to start 9 March. No such answer.

SEQZ refers to a Special Enforcement and Cleaning Zone that is from 4th St to Speedway and Westminster to Navy both sides of the street.

Note: That tents down would not be enforced while there is a rain forecast.

Wilhite made the statement 4 March “There are requests from the community that we delay it longer, even upwards of 90 days, but we are hopeful these two weeks will let our outreach teams and on site service providers do their work to open the site successfully.”

Venice Update knows of no one making such requests. To the contrary, people are asking without response why this has not been initiated as promised.