Raman and Ridley-Thomas sworn in

| December 31, 2020 | 0 Comments

ON THE JOB, Councilmember Raman poses with her family last month in the John Ferraro City Council Chamber.

New City Councilmembers Nithya Raman and Mark Ridley-Thomas, elected in November, took office last month.

Raman was sworn in to her new job representing Council District Four at a Dec. 15 ceremony where she announced her first two motions before City Council. Both proposals are aimed at addressing homelessness, a key campaign priority for Raman.   

“I believe, so powerfully, there is nowhere else on earth like Los Angeles. A city that is so thrilling and magnificent, with so much stunning natural and human diversity, where people can come from anywhere in the world and feel welcomed and find community and build their dreams,” Raman said to her new Council colleagues. “And yet — just as vast as this city’s capacity for joy has been — so too has been its tolerance for suffering.”

Raman went on to say that economic forces are pushing people out of their homes, out of the city, and onto the street: “I feel the weight of this moment so heavily. It hangs on my heart,” she said.

Following the swearing-in ceremony, Raman and Ridley-Thomas — who served on the Council in the ‘90s before his time in state and county government — participated in the year’s last City Council meeting. The Council recessed until this month.

Council motions

Raman’s first motion asks the Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority and the city to report back on the status of homeless outreach efforts, including how teams are managed, where in the city efforts are taking places, and how resources are divided between proactive and reactive efforts. Her second motion asks the city to identify funding and possible sites for homeless services, such as restrooms, showers and storage, in CD4.

“As homelessness has become widespread across our entire city, services have not expanded to meet the need,” Raman stated in remarks following her swearing in.

Council District 10 Councilmember Thomas, who replaced Herb Wesson, struck a similar tone in his remarks when he called homelessness the “moral crisis of our time.”

Thomas introduced a motion to ask the city to report back on creating a “Right to Housing” framework within city law. And he introduced a resolution for the city to support state Assembly Bill 71, which proposes $2.4 billion for homelessness and housing efforts.

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