Homeless Face New Threat in Southern California: Fire

Orange County Seal
Orange County Seal

The homeless issue in Southern California has a new facet to it that is adding new stress: fires.

As the homeless population in Southern California (as we reported on last month) continues to rise, accommodations are nowhere near in sight as the city of Los Angeles among other major centers in Southern California are being inundated with new waves of people who are unable to find housing.

Back in August, the city of Los Angeles which has the second-largest homeless population in the nation, attempted to alleviate the issue by passing an ordinance, first proposed by Councilman Bob Blumenfield in January of this year, greenlighting police removal of any person who lives, camps, or resides in any restricted zone; and can be punishable with a misdemeanor.

Again in September, the Los Angeles City Council voted unanimously in approval of a new ordinance that will send authorities to remove any areas of homeless residence to remove the occupants; as the city reasoned they were prone to fire danger.

A month later in October, the police followed through by removing homeless residents that were in fire danger areas.

However, as Los Angeles tries to remove homeless residents who are fire-prone Orange county today got a wake-up call as a 2.75-acre wildfire broke out in the Cleveland National Forest near Silverado Canyon.

In April of 2019, a lawsuit had been filed with the allegations that many south Orange County cities had at best not done anything to address the fire danger of their homeless communities, or at worst flat out attempted to stop any attempt to resolve the homeless fire danger issue.

At present, it is not known if any homeless residents were affected by the wildfire as authorities attempt to deal with the aftermath of the blaze.

Continued refusal by civic leaders to address this issue will continue to exacerbate the problem as Orange County and other Southern California cities find themselves unable to help some of their most vulnerable citizens.


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