Los Angeles Councilmember Calls for Ban on Homeless Encampments Near Schools

Los Angeles City Councilmember Joe Buscaino called for a ban on homeless encampments from within 500 feet of schools, but his press conference on Aug. 16 was cut short when activists disrupted the announcement.

Earlier this month, Mayor Eric Garcetti restored a ban on homeless encampments in public areas. The ordinance also gives city council members the ability to ban encampments in parts of their districts.  

From Larchmont Charter School in Hollywood, Buscaino announced he wanted to use the ordinance to ban encampments from sidewalks within 500 feet of public schools. 

“Hundreds of thousands of students are going back to school for the first time in 18-months,” Buscaino said. “During the pandemic encampments formed and grew around school campuses as they did in Venice Beach. We must address public safety issues—especially simple access to sidewalks.”

Buscaino called schools a “sensitive-use” area, saying “the most sensitive areas are those where our kids spend their days.”  

“That is why I am proposing a no-camping zone around every public school in the City of Los Angeles,” Buscaino said.

The city’s new anti-camping ordinance, which goes into effect on Sept. 3, permits the city council to adopt resolutions to establish no-camping zones around specific locations, like homeless shelters, parks, and schools.READ MORE