President Obama pledges to fight LA poverty in designated ‘Promise Zone’

Jan 8, 2014


A homeless woman sits amid their belongings on a street in downtown Los Angeles, California, on January 8, 2014. Poverty in the world’s largest economy remains far from being eradicated fifty years after President Lyndon Johnson declared a war on poverty in America in his first State of the Union address on this date in 1964, with a US Census Bureau report revealing on January 7 that nearly one in three Americans experienced poverty for at least two months during the global recession between 2009 and 2011. And in 2012, poverty affected some 47 million Americans, including 13 million children.; Credit: FREDERIC J. BROWN/AFP/Getty Images

50 years ago Lyndon Johnson launched a War on Poverty in America, and a half century later, President Obama is using the anniversary to establish poverty-fighting  “Promise Zones” in different cities across the across the country.

LA’s zone, which includes the K-town, Westlake, and Pico-Union area, is set to receive tens of millions of federal improvement dollars, up to $500 million in the next decade.

What does this money mean for some of the most poverty-stricken urban areas in the nation? How are legislators planning to use the money if the total amount has yet to be decided, and how will the inevitable brawl over where to spend the federal money play out?


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