April 11, 2020

I hope you all are well.  Our case is one of the very few cases that continue during this period. Although the Courthouse is closed our hearings continue in the Alexandria Hotel ballroom.  The next hearing is scheduled for Tuesday.  I have attached a court minute order issued yesterday.  Please read it as it provides a good update on where we are at the moment.  As the minute order advises, the court has started with some small issues in the Skid Row area but plans to expand into a larger geographical area shortly.  The court is beginning settlement discussions immediately and has to date avoided the normally very tedious litigation process. Obviously, a settlement requires agreement between the parties.  Having litigated these matters for decades with the City and County, we remain cautiously optimistic.

As you can see from the Minute Order, at the moment the court is focused on RVs parked along the 10 Freeway. If anyone has insights about empty or useable lots in the area that might be leased for a 90-day or more period of time please let us know. The same applies to buildings that might be available for habitation for a period of time (terms are very negotiable).  We want to appear at the hearing with ideas for the City/County to consider for immediate shelter under supervision of the court. Coming to court with reasonable suggestions can only help our position.  We also have a number of longer-term proposals that we will be presenting, as we must remain focused on the desired goal of lasting transformation of this crisis. 

Our case is the best chance we have had in many years to make a meaningful change in the street homeless situation.  This court is determined to challenge the City/County into creating long-term solutions while addressing the triage urgency of the virus.

I have also attached the transcript of the hearing held last Tuesday. If you have the time or inclination please take a look.   At one point you will see that the court asked Legal Aid folks if they are proud of their legal victories that have led to this homeless “abomination”.  Liz, and her firm, continue to do an outstanding job representing us.

Thanks, as always, for your support.

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