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Homeless Angelenos Now Have A Place To Keep Their Stuff Safe

Belongings of homeless people are stored in a warehouse after workers cleared encampments in 2014. (Maya Sugarman / KPCC)
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Los Angeles has opened its first "homeless navigation center" in North Hollywood.

Located at the site of a former day labor center on Sherman Way and Redford Avenue, the facility will provide a variety of services for the homeless, including laundry, hygiene stations, and social services.

But what sets it apart from the city’s growing network of shelters and other homeless support centers is that it also offers 120 storage bins, so homeless individuals have a place to secure their belongings during the day.

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60-gallon bins for the homeless to store their belongings at the North Hollywood navigation center (via Instagram @paulkrekorian)

City Councilmember Paul Krekorian, who represents the 2nd District, called the new facility a “game-changer” in that respect.

“Because whether they're looking for a job, looking to get education, or taking their kids to school, [people experiencing homelessness] are at risk of losing everything they own every single day,” he said at today’s ribbon-cutting ceremony.

The homeless also risk having their belongings taken or destroyed during periodic “sweeps” of encampments by police or sanitation workers, though a legal settlement last year temporarily restricts what kind of property the city can seize from someone living on Skid Row.

Two additional navigation centers are expected to open later this year, including one near the LAPD's Harbor Division station in San Pedro.

Earlier attempts to open such facilities failed in 2016, after neighborhood groups shot down previous locations proposed for San Pedro and Venice, arguing that those sites were too close to schools.