Long Beach, CA – As a result of consistently windy, cold and wet weather in Long Beach, the City will set up 60 warming beds beginning today, Feb. 26, through at least Sunday, March 5, for people experiencing homelessness. The beds will be located at the Multi-Service Center (1301 W. 12th St.). The warming beds will be removed every morning ahead of MSC operations, which begin at 8 a.m. on weekdays.
People will be able to access the warming beds by visiting the MSC at 6 p.m. Beds will be offered on a first come, first served basis to people experiencing homelessness in Long Beach. Earlier today, outreach workers began canvassing people to let them know warming beds would be available. Outreach will continue throughout the week.
The Homeless Services Bureau of the Health and Human Services Department is seeking community groups that can assist with evening meals. People interested should call 562.570.4500 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. This evening, food will be provided by the MSC.
In recent days, Long Beach has experienced extraordinary amounts of rainfall and wind, with temperatures dipping as low as 43 degrees. Severe storms are expected to resume Monday, Feb. 27, with cold overnight temperatures – as chilly as 40 degrees on Wednesday, March 1 – creating a heightened risk of illness or death among people who are unsheltered. This past Friday, Feb. 24, a person experiencing homelessness died due to exposure.
There is a persistent struggle to meet the sheltering needs of Long Beach’s residents who are unhoused, especially during this treacherous winter. An 81-bed emergency shelter was stood up at Community Hospital on Dec. 19, 2022, and has been consistently full since opening.
The City is committed to providing shelter beds to its residents who are unhoused, both through municipal shelters and beds provided by its partners. There are approximately 1,300 beds across Long Beach provided by the City and its partners. Between 2020 and 2022, the City and LA County added 530 interim housing beds in Long Beach through emergency shelter, Project Homekey and Project Roomkey. Since then, due to a reduction in available funding for Project Roomkey and the transition of two Project Homekey sites into permanent supportive housing, interim housing beds currently average around 300 operated by the City and L.A. County, with an additional 120 beds expected to be added by the City within the next year.
On Jan. 10, 2023, homelessness was proclaimed an emergency in Long Beach. The emergency allows for increased ability to hire or contract critical roles and recruit qualified candidates; more quickly engage needed services, material and labor; speed up large-scale construction projects such as motel conversions and tiny homes; and work through zoning requirements that currently exclude certain uses of existing properties.
For more information on the City’s efforts to reduce homelessness in Long Beach, people may visit longbeach.gov/homelessness and follow @lbhealthdept and @longbeachcity on social media and follow the hashtag #EveryoneHomeLB.