L.A. Board of Supervisor Candidates on the Issues: Child Welfare, Juvenile Justice, Housing and Homelessness

2nd District candidates forum
Top candidates for the second district seat on the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors include (left to right) lawyer Jake Jeong, State Senator Holly Mitchell, former L.A. City Councilmember Jan Perry and L.A. City Councilmember Herb Wesson.

This weekThe Chronicle of Social Change is publishing a series of posts from leading candidates running to succeed Mark Ridley-Thomas on the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors. Ridley-Thomas is stepping down because of term limits, and a full slate of candidates is running to take his place on the board, representing more than 2 million residents across parts of South, Central and West L.A., as well as several other communities in L.A. County.

On March 3, voters will go to the polls to elect his successor, who will help oversee an annual budget of $33 billion. We asked several top candidates to share their ideas on the county’s critical safety-net challenges, such as child welfare, juvenile justice, homelessness and affordable housing. To hear more about these issues, join us at a nonpartisan candidates forum on January 31 at Los Angeles Trade Technical College, hosted in partnership with Southern California Grantmakers and United Way of Greater Los Angeles.

You can find answers on these issues from the candidates by clicking on the questions below, or see a list of all posts here.

Black children are overrepresented in L.A. County’s child welfare system. While black children compose 7.1 percent of all children in the county, they make up 28.6 percent of foster children here. What would you do to address this issue?

Homelessness, a multifaceted problem, has today become endemic in the Second District, where 19,123 unhoused Angelenos are currently in need of our county’s care and thousands more are on the brink of homelessness. How will you work to end homelessness while respecting the dignity of the unhoused?

San Francisco decided to shutter its juvenile hall last year in favor of a more therapeutic facility. Meanwhile, L.A. County’s Central Juvenile Hall is the nation’s oldest juvenile hall and in poor repair. As the number of youth held in the county’s juvenile detention camps and hall continues to plummet, what should L.A. County do with its aging juvenile halls?

According to the Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority, youth homelessness has grown by 22 percent over the last year. Nearly 30 percent of homeless youth in L.A. County come from the county’s foster care system. What would you do to stem the foster-care-to-homelessness pipeline?

The Second District has become very unaffordable for many Angelenos. What is your plan for affordable housing — especially for protecting residents and the fabric of their communities in the wake of an affordability crisis?

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