LOS ANGELES-City officials this week will step-up a controversial “clean-up” campaign that supporters say will make Downtown a more attractive place to do business and protect the public’s health, but that opponents claim infringes on the right of homeless persons to live and linger wherever they wish.

The plan, championed by LA City Councilwoman Jan Perry, allows the small street-sweeping machines that previously ran along only Downtown streets to also sweep the sidewalks. Many homeless persons say such sweeps are against the law, and that moving their makeshift sidewalk homes or shopping carts is an inconvenience.

Councilwoman Perry counters that sweeping sidewalks as well as streets is important because it makes Downtown a “better place” for people who work in the area and that the sweeps help to fight the spread of disease. She also believes that few businesses will want to take office or retail space in the area if homeless persons can continue to block entrances, leave their shopping carts on the sidewalk, or camp out on the streets.

Perry’s efforts to clean up the area are opposed by the American Civil Liberties Union and other advocates for the homeless. The ACLU says it’s illegal for the government to remove shopping carts and boxes that have been claimed by homeless persons, and that the city’s policy of sweeping the sidewalks protects businesses without also protecting the homeless.

Want to continue reading?
Become a Free ALM Digital Reader.

Once you are an ALM digital member, you’ll receive:

  • Unlimited access to GlobeSt and other free ALM publications
  • Access to 15 years of GlobeSt archives
  • Your choice of GlobeSt digital newsletters and over 70 others from popular sister publications
  • 1 free article* every 30 days across the ALM subscription network
  • Exclusive discounts on ALM events and publications

*May exclude premium content
Already have an account?



Join GlobeSt

Don't miss crucial news and insights you need to make informed commercial real estate decisions. Join GlobeSt.com now!

  • Free unlimited access to GlobeSt.com's trusted and independent team of experts who provide commercial real estate owners, investors, developers, brokers and finance professionals with comprehensive coverage, analysis and best practices necessary to innovate and build business.
  • Exclusive discounts on ALM and GlobeSt events.
  • Access to other award-winning ALM websites including ThinkAdvisor.com and Law.com.

Already have an account? Sign In Now
Join GlobeSt

Copyright © 2022 ALM Global, LLC. All Rights Reserved.