One question tends to pop up more frequently in the Tri-Counties’ downtown areas as soon as temperatures rise: “Can you spare any change?”
That question might be asked even more this year because of a sinking economy and the clean-up on Los Angeles’ notorious homeless hangout Skid Row.
With Santa Barbara’s main homeless shelter, Casa Esperanza, closed for the spring and summer months, more transients will turn to Santa Barbara Rescue Mission, which has served the area for 43 years.
This year the situation appears more severe from downtown Ventura to Santa Barbara’s State Street.
New efforts to deal with transients in downtown Ventura have gained momentum, but Santa Barbara is struggling with the problem since the seasonal closure of 100 beds at Casa Esperanza at the start of spring.
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