WESTCHESTER, LOS ANGELES (KABC) — A group of Westchester Park residents is fighting L.A. City Hall is concerned about an expanding homeless encampment near the senior center and library.
The Westchester Playa Community Coalition is their name. They claim they’ve been fighting Councilman Mike Bonin’s efforts to keep the nearly two dozen R.V.s and other vehicles there for more than a year.
“Because this parking lot is under city jurisdiction, not recreation and parks, while recreation and parks clean up the park’s other parking lots to make them safe for children and Our council elders will not clean this parking lot.” Debra Huston explained.
The community group has taken the unusual step of creating a GoFundMe account to raise funds for legal fees in their battle with City Hall. So far, they’ve raised nearly $3,000.
Some people in Westchester Park have taken several steps to fight the growing homeless encampment in the parking lot next to the library and senior center. https://t.co/O7XafzUKco
— ABC7 Eyewitness News (@ABC7) September 28, 2022
The group believes it was instrumental in delaying a plan to convert Another parking lot at Westchester Park has been converted into a 24-hour safe parking area, which the L.A.The Department of Recreation and Parks was similarly shot down.
“We learned this past Friday that the proposal was not moving forward, and we believe our attorney played a significant role in that,” Huston said.
According to the lawyer, the city does not permit living in the park or any other park in Los Angeles. The situation in Westchester is similar to what is happening in several different neighborhoods throughout Los Angeles, where communities and City Hall are squabbling over what to do with homeless people who have set up camp in city parks.
We reached out to Councilman Bonin for comment but have yet to receive a response.
As both parties contemplate what to do about the encampment, there are signs that it may end up in court.