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Morning Brief: Hunger In LA, A Warm Thanksgiving, And Turkey Trots

A woman lifts a cardboard carton with fruit, including oranges and apples. She wears a white face mask and a florescent orange, grey and yellow vest. Another woman in similar clothing loads something into the trunk of a car in the background.
Boxes of food are distributed by the Los Angeles Regional Food Bank on August 6, 2020 in Paramount, California.
(Mario Tama/Getty Images)
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Good morning, L.A. It’s Nov. 23.

A new report found that about 10% of Angelenos experience food insecurity. But in a lawsuit filed yesterday, two local nonprofits say that applications for food assistance in L.A. County are routinely processed far too slowly. 

The suit alleges that some of the county’s poorest households — many of which include children — have been forced to wait so long for benefits that they skip meals and go hungry, reports my colleague David Wagner.

These households, identified as making less than $150 per month and having less than $100 in cash, qualify to have their applications processed in three days rather than the standard 30. But according to the suit, just 37% of these applicants received their benefits on time in April 2020. By April 2021, that number was only up to 47%.

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The lawsuit was brought by the Los Angeles Community Action Network and Hunger Action Los Angeles, as well as an applicant who faced long delays.

Lena Silver, lead attorney on the suit and associate director of litigation and policy advocacy at Neighborhood Legal Services of L.A. County, said that such long wait times — and the ensuing lack of nourishment — can be traumatic, particularly for children.

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“Children can experience and feel the emotional stress of food insecurity,” she said. “It's an adverse childhood experience that can cause long-term physical and mental effects.”

Keep reading for more on what’s happening in L.A., and stay safe out there.

What Else You Need To Know Today

  • Today is the last public hearing in the L.A. City Council’s redistricting discussions before they vote on a proposal in early December.
  • This year's Thanksgiving won't be the hottest on record, but it will be warm and windy.
  • A spacecraft is scheduled to blast off from SoCal’s Vandenberg Space Force Base today.
  • Global supply chain issues are pushing up the price of food, and it’s hurting restaurants in one of L.A.’s food meccas: Koreatown.

Before You Go ... This Week's Outdoor Pick: Turkey Trots

Jazmín Ortega in her turkey hat at Turkey Trot DTLA.
(Sharon McNary

Thanksgiving weekend is coming, along with its traditional caloric overload and sedentary TV viewing of parades and football. Turkey trots — short races that you can run or walk before the big meal — offer a chance to get the blood flowing before collapsing into the BarcaLounger. Here’s how to get started, if you’re trot-curious.

Or, you could: View costumes and designs from the House of Gucci. Help the unhoused on Thanksgiving morning. Watch the Troubies’ latest holiday show, Santa Claus is Comin’ to Motown. And more.

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