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Why is homelessness among women in LA on the rise?

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Homeless women prepare for another day and night on the street near Skid Row in Los Angeles, California on May 12, 2015. A report released by the Los Angeles Homeless Authority on May 11 showed a 12% increase in the homeless population in both Los Angeles city and county, which according to the report have been driven by soaring rents, low wages and stubbornly high unemployment. One of the most striking findings from the biennial figures released saw the number of makeshift encampments, tents and vehicles occupied by the homeless increased 85%.  AFP PHOTO / FREDERIC J. BROWN        (Photo credit should read FREDERIC J. BROWN/AFP/Getty Images)
FREDERIC J. BROWN/AFP/Getty Images
Homeless women prepare for another day and night on the street near Skid Row in Los Angeles, California on May 12, 2015.

The increasing cost of housing in Los Angeles is one big factor contributing to the rise in the population of homeless women.

Among the many many issues on the ballot in Los Angeles this November is the thorny problem of homelessness. 

Proposition HHH is a 1.2 billion dollar housing bond aimed at building 8,000 to 10,000 permanent units to house L.A.'s homeless.

It's a demographic that is swiftly growing, thanks, in part, to more women without a place to live.  

A new report out Wednesday from the Downtown Women's Action Coalition finds a 55 percent increase in the number of women experiencing homelessness in the city since 2013.

Anne Miskey, CEO of the Downtown Women's Center, says the increasing cost of housing in Los Angeles is one big factor contributing to the rise in the population of homeless women.

"The economic conditions are affecting women more than anyone else," Miskey says. "We know that women make less wages than men to begin with, so when the economy turns down, when housing prices go up, they're often the first that are being hit.

Another major factor contributing to homelessness among women, Miskey says, is domestic violence and sexual assault "that causes women to experience extreme trauma and is sending them to the streets."

To hear the full interview with Anne Miskey and community advocate Silvia Hernandez, click the blue player above.

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