‘Do We Care?’ Billboards Urge Empathy, Action on Homelessness

In Featured by Rachel Mills

Public awareness campaign—with stark billboard image of a homeless person asleep on a sheet of cardboard—pushes civic leaders and community to act more swiftly and decisively on homeless crisis.

 ‘Do We Care?’ campaign follows ‘Homeless’ billboards posted in February that echoed the iconic ‘Hollywood’ sign and cut to the heart of the crisis in L.A. and bureaucrats’ lax response.

LOS ANGELES (May 23, 2018) Advocates and officials with ‘Healthy Housing Foundation by AHF,’ a new program spearheaded by AHF to address the housing crisis by providing faster access to housing with a focus on addressing the needs of low-income individuals and those unsheltered or homeless, have launched a new public awareness and billboard campaign in Los Angeles intended to encourage civic leaders and the community to act more swiftly and decisively on the homeless crisis. The campaign launched this week with at least 15 billboards posted throughout Greater Los Angeles.

The billboard campaign, simply headlined, ‘Do We Care?’ (with English & Spanish versions) features a stark image of a homeless person asleep on a sheet of cardboard on a sidewalk or the pavement—a horizontal image of an individual stretching the entire 48 foot length of (most) billboard postings—and an image that underscores just how widespread the homeless crisis is in Los Angeles. In addition to the three-word headline (two in Spanish) the only other text on the billboard drives viewers to the website: www.HealthyHousingLA.org

The ‘Do We Care?’ billboard advocacy campaign follows an earlier ‘Homeless’ billboard campaign launched by the same advocates in February. That billboard echoed the famed ‘Hollywood’ sign and was intended put the spotlight on the burgeoning homeless and housing crisis in Los Angeles as well as what many advocates see as a lax, insufficiently urgent response from bureaucrats and elected officials

‘Healthy Housing Foundation by AHF’                                                                                            Late last year AHF launched the ‘Healthy Housing Foundation by AHF’ as part of a community-based effort to address the exploding housing and homelessness crisis in Los Angeles. AHF purchased the Madison Hotel[1], in Downtown L.A. in October 2017, followed quickly by the January, 2018 purchase of a 27-room motel[2]  in the heart of Hollywood then known as the Sunset 8 Motel and renamed the more purposeful ‘Sunrise on Sunset.’. In March 2018, AHF purchased the historic King Edward Hotel on the corner of 5th and Los Angeles Streets.

‘Healthy Housing Foundation by AHF’ is renovating and upgrading all three properties, prioritizing housing placements for individuals—and in the case of the Sunrise on Sunset, individuals AND families—with chronic health conditions (but not necessarily HIV or AIDS).

[1] The purchase price for the Madison Hotel was $7,575,000, (the parking lot was $450K – total $8,025,000.00 less a repair credit of $25K and a donation of $50K to AHF – net price $7,950,000) or approximately $36K per room or unit.

[2] The purchase price for the 27-room Sunset 8 Motel was $4.6 million, or $170,370 per room or unit.

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