Antelope Valley homeless struggling to find relief from intense heat wave: 'It's just unbearable'

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Thursday, September 8, 2022
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The extreme heat is making it tough to do anything outdoors, especially for those experiencing homelessness.

LANCASTER, Calif. (KABC) -- The extreme heat is making it tough to do anything outdoors, especially for those experiencing homelessness.

Men, women and children across Southern California that are unable to find shelter have been doing what they can to stay cool.

Tiffany Brisco has had to face the triple-digit heat wave head on. She told Eyewitness News she drinks plenty of water and stays in the shade as much as possible but it is hard.

Those who work at the Grace Resource Center in Lancaster say just in the last month, several homeless people have died dealing with the heat.

"We've had four clients, that we know of, that have died from exposure, died from heat, just in the last month," said Jeremy Johnson, director of the Grace Resource Center, which provides resources to the homeless and others in need.

Johnson said in his seven years working in Antelope Valley, this is the most sustained heat wave he and his colleagues can recall.

"The issue here is not just the daytime heat, which are reaching 110 to 115 degrees, but it's those overnight heats that are getting down just to the low 80s," he said. "Folks that are homeless...their bodies don't have time to recover."

One woman named Sue told Eyewitness News when she seeks shelter from the scorching heat in stores and restaurants, she is mostly turned away.

"It's just unbearable," she said.

Johnson said he's not sure we can ever end homelessness, but we can certainly reach out to those in need and help them.