The disconcerting article behind this LINK reveals yet another serious outbreak of a disease primarily affecting our homeless sisters and brothers.
An excerpt: “There have been 64 cases of typhus reported across Los Angeles County so far this year, more than the 53 cases recorded this time last year, and on track to surpass the 67 cases diagnosed last year total. A department of public health spokesperson said the outbreak began with 11 cases of typhus in downtown Los Angeles, six of which were diagnosed in people who were homeless. Unlike hepatitis A, the form of typhus typically found in California is not usually fatal and can’t be passed from person to person.
According to the most recent count, 53,000 people are homeless across Los Angeles county, many of them in the downtown neighborhood of Skid Row. The streets of Skid Row are lined with tents and sometimes strewn with trash.
Chronic sickness and hospitalization is common among the residents of Skid Row, many of whom have been forced into the streets by the city’s soaring rents and lack of affordable housing. Homeless residents have no choice but to live in close proximity to rats and other rodents, putting the homeless and their pets especially at risk for flea exposure and typhus. The lack of access to toilets and places to wash up can also help the spread of disease.”