Homelessness

A scene of homeless misery greets patrons trying to use Santa Ana's award-winning library

A scene of homeless misery greets patrons trying to use Santa Ana's award-winning library

Haley Flores grew up poring over history books at the Santa Ana Public Library while her little brothers built up their vocabulary there and read tales about alien attacks and outer space.

But a visit to the downtown library has become, on many days, a walk through a gantlet of misery: Homeless men and women sleep in the lawn while others plead with visitors for change.

Inside the building, signs warned people to avoid restrooms where some homeless use sinks and even toilet water to bathe themselves and wash their clothes. Some of Santa Ana’s down-and-out used the study carrels to look for jobs — others shot up drugs, their syringes found...

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