A day before Karen Bass was inaugurated as LA’s new mayor, sanitation workers were seen removing homeless encampments near City Hall, where the ceremony was scheduled. Rain forced the ceremony to be moved, but not before camera crews investigated the state of the city building. Camera crews reported that cleanup staff had stopped and left when they arrived.
Following her inauguration Sunday afternoon, LA Mayor Karen Bass announced that her first action in office would be to declare a state of emergency for homelessness. According to the newly appointed mayor, there are more than 40,000 homeless individuals in the city. As a result of the declaration, homelessness will be recognized as a crisis.
Homeless being moved: Encampments near L.A. City Hall removed ahead of mayoral inauguration. The curious cleanup – now on ABC7 https://t.co/PFUFrtxm5O
— ABC7 Eyewitness News (@ABC7) December 9, 2022
“Los Angeles has called me to serve at an inflection point in our history,” Bass said. The mayor explained that the country has recently experienced a pandemic, inflation has increased and too many people are sleeping on the streets. “No matter what, we never give up. We have never given up, and that’s our LA magic.”
Bass argues that too many city residents are forced to live in cramped conditions with multiple families. Many people are experiencing financial hardship due to the high cost of living. According to the mayor, some people are pushed into addiction crises and lose their homes.
Bass has been working with former Mayor Eric Garcetti over the past three weeks to transition into office successfully. A vital aspect of this transition has been a call to action for city council members, city attorneys and others to join forces and act urgently to resolve homelessness. “We have already started,” Bass declared, urging everyone to stand with her. “You elected me to lead, and lead, I will do.”
As part of the ceremony, Vice President Kamala Harris swore Bass into office without giving a speech. Due to the rain and the cleanup efforts of the homeless encampments, the ceremony was held at the Microsoft Theater rather than City Hall.