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Nicolas Gutierrez III

Doctoral Student in Sociology, University of Southern California
Chapter Member: Los Angeles Unified SSN
Areas of Expertise:

About Nicolas

Gutierrez's research centers on the criminalization of homelessness, the expansion of the police state, and community resistance. His current project examines grassroots solidarity with unhoused neighbors against encampment sweeps in Los Angeles. His past work has explored service-seeking behaviors of those experiencing homelessness, public perceptions of homeless-serving facilities, and public restroom availability in San Diego. He serves on the West Adams Neighborhood Council’s Homelessness committee, organizing local homeless-serving programs. Gutierrez is a USC Provost Fellow and W.E.B. DuBois & Ida B. Wells-Barnett Graduate Scholar.


"Community Acceptance of, and Opposition to, Homeless-Serving Facilities" (with Megan Welsh Carroll and Brian E. Adams). International Journal on Homelessness 3, no. 2 (2023): 156–183.

Analyzes under what conditions will the public accept homeless-serving housing and social service facilities in their neighborhood.  Answers this question through a basic descriptive statistical analysis of a brief survey (respondent n=251) and a thematic analysis of seven focus groups with residents of San Diego, California (participant n=34).

"Black Lives Experiencing Homelessness Matter: A Critical Conceptual Framework for Understanding How Policing Drives System Avoidance among Vulnerable Populations" (with Megan Welsh Carroll and Shawn Teresa Flanigan). Public Integrity (2022).

Examines racialized encounters with the police from the perspectives of people experiencing homelessness in San Diego, California in 2020. Conducts a survey of (n = 244) and interviews with (n = 57) homeless San Diegans during initial shelter-in-place orders, oversampling for Black respondents, whose voices are often under-represented despite high rates of homelessness nationally. Reflects on these findings and our framework for envisioning a system of public safety that supports and cares for—rather than punishes—the most vulnerable members of our society.