As California’s homeless crisis continues to spiral out of control, one Los Angeles business remains deadlocked in a feud with the city over a push to move a homeless camp.
George Frem, a Lebanese-American immigrant who owns Mar Vista-area business Exclusive Motors, joined “Fox & Friends” on Tuesday where he detailed the struggle to get the sprawling camp out of his way, even after a 2020 court ruling declaring it must go.
“Our failed policies got us into this…” he told host Ainsley Earhardt. “You also have to remember that this is not a problem that happened yesterday. This is a 120-year-old problem and nobody was doing anything about it. Nobody thought it’s going to turn into a big, big cancer.”
Frem said the first homeless person camped outside his business nearly 10 years ago, but he chose not to cause a stir over the problem. He said he believed politicians would listen to his concerns and act accordingly, but it has yet to manifest.
“Since 2014, we’ve had to go through so many impossibles to, first, prove to them that we’re not trying to discriminate against the poor by asking them to remove the poor and give them a place to stay, eat and sleep, and then trying to change the narrative that having homelessness is not okay, and having the media change the narrative and say ‘Somebody’s responsible for that, and it’s going to be our city officials and our county officials,'” he continued.
He also lumped federal and state officials into the culprits behind the crisis, adding that “every citizen” is responsible for the problem.
Los Angeles County provided a statement to Fox News, responding to homelessness concerns, saying, “LA County declared a state of emergency on homelessness earlier this year and is further fast-tracking efforts to resolve encampments and scale up housing and mental health and substance use disorder services…
“This Homelessness Emergency Response will build on efforts that have sheltered 120,000 people and housed 90,000 people over the last five years.”
Still, Frem says talking to city officials hasn’t been easy and, despite his business previously joining others in filing a lawsuit over the crisis, he said the problem lingers.
“If you look at Tesla, for example, when they gave Elon Musk incentives to come to California, he was the first to start his business in Los Angeles. When things don’t go the right way, instead of sending a letter to the mayor and suing the mayor like I did, the smart businessman moved out of the place, and he started his business somewhere else.
“It’s easier to send a rocket to the moon than send a letter to the mayor’s office,” he said.