Supervisor Solis passes motion requiring increased local and targeted worker hiring and Project Labor Agreements

Following several years of community meetings led by the Health Innovation Community Partnership and actions taken at the Board of Supervisors by Los Angeles County Supervisor Hilda L. Solis, today the Board of Supervisors approved $68.4 million for the construction contract of Phase 1 of the Restorative Care Village at the LAC+USC Medical Center and established goals and requirements for local and targeted hire for Phase 1 and future related projects.

“Phase 1 of the Restorative Care Village at LAC+USC will serve tens of thousands of vulnerable patients for generations to come, preventing homelessness and violence by providing patients with a safe place to sleep and fully recover from their injury or illness,” said Supervisor Solis. “LA County is taking the first step to creating the nation’s first mental health and well-being campus dedicated to the continuum of needs of our most vulnerable populations. This is not business as usual. This is community first.”

The LAC+USC Restorative Care Village will be an innovative environment providing patients with access to a new, comprehensive, whole person approach to the interrelated and complex issues that lead to homelessness, such as violence and abuse (including victims of sex trafficking, and children, adult, and LGBTQ+ populations), substance abuse, mental illness, disability, unemployment and underemployment, unstable housing, and medical comorbidities.

Today, the Board of Supervisors approved $68.4 million for Phase 1 of the Restorative Care Village, which will include an Acute Care Hub with 160 beds of bridge housing. 96 Recuperative Care beds and 64 Crisis Residential Care beds comprise the total.

Recuperative care beds are for patients who are ready to be discharged but have no safe place to fully recover. Recuperation on the street is nearly impossible, but recuperative care beds allow patients to more fully recover from acute medical illness. At any given time, there are between 50-100 patients at LAC+USC who no longer require expensive hospitalization, but are waiting for a step-down bed. The new Recuperative Care Center will include 96 beds, which will be accessible to patients at any County inpatient facility. Case management and access to primary care, mental health care, and substance use disorder services will be available on the campus to support patients after discharge and transition them into bridge housing.

Similar to Recuperative Care beds, Crisis Residential Care beds enable patients who are not yet able to live independently to remain in a safe, clean, sober, and nurturing environment while permanent supportive housing is sought. Crisis Residential Care housing is appropriate for patients with mental illness in recovery stage, for newly sober victims recovering from substance abuse, and for patients who have no medical needs but need to escape unsafe environments where they may be exposed to violence, abuse, or sex-trafficking. Patients will continue to have access to primary care, mental health care, and substance use disorder services on campus.

Phase 1 will also serve at-risk youth and families, with 32 sequestered units (16 Recuperative and 16 Crisis Residential beds).

The Board of Supervisors also passed a related motion today, authored by Supervisor Solis, to establish an aspirational goal of local and targeted worker hire of 20% on the Phase 1 project. This is in addition to the mandatory 30% on the current phase, for a total of 50%. (The initial make-ready work for this project has resulted in approximately 63% of local and targeted worker hire.) The motion also requires Project Labor Agreements to future phases of the Restorative Care Village and other LAC+USC Capital Projects. By approving Supervisor Solis’ motion, LA County is ensuring that this $68.4 million construction contract and subsequent contracts translate to family-sustaining wages and careers for traditionally underserved populations.

“Before the Restorative Care Village even opens its doors to patients, we are promising that its construction serves local families and our communities,” said Supervisor Solis. “The enduring promise of LAC+USC Medical Center is to serve everyone in the local and greater Los Angeles community. With today’s actions, we are continuing that proud legacy of service and care.”

The Health Innovation Community Partnership (HICP), consisting of stakeholders from Boyle Heights, Lincoln Heights, El Sereno, City Terrace, and East Los Angeles, was created by a motion, authored by Supervisor Solis, and passed by the Board of Supervisors in March 2017. HICP was founded to ensure that the use of County assets and development on and around the LAC+USC Medical Center campus was responsive to community needs and priorities, and tied to near and long-term community benefits.

Phase 1 of the Restorative Care Village also includes the demolition of the Women and Children’s Hospital, which has sat unused and vacant since the 1994 Northridge earthquake. After the award of a demolition contract, demolition of the Women and Children’s Hospital is scheduled to begin in early 2020, which will help clear the path for subsequent phases of the Restorative Care Village. Completion of substantial construction of the 160 beds of Phase 1 is projected to be completed in early 2021.

The construction of the Restorative Care Village is part of Supervisor Solis’ larger vision that focuses on creating a “Healthy Village” in and around the LAC+USC Medical Center campus, providing residents with access to world-class integrated health delivery combined with development that promotes economic prosperity, health, and infrastructure for the betterment of the greater community.

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