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Louisiana's homeless population declines almost 20% since 2016, according to HUD report

07 December 2017

OR saw a 5 percent increase this year, while in Washington the homeless population rose to 21,112 - an increase of 1 percent over the previous year.

Kizer attributed the homeless increase to a lack of affordable housing in Great Falls.

Out of all jurisdictions that are required to report counts to receive federal funding, King County ranked third both in homelessness-behind only New York City and Los Angeles County-and in people living unsheltered.

The unsheltered, chronically homeless more than doubled from 155 to 341 in one year and unsheltered homeless individuals rose 31 percent.

Rents are going up and more people are sleeping on trains and outside, said Nilsson, who has a past president of the Minnesota Coalition for the Homeless.

The overall homeless population in west states of California, Oregon and Washington increased by 14 percent over the past two years, of which the part considered unsheltered jumped by 23 percent to approach 110,000. It does not take into account families and individuals who might experience homelessness at other times during the year.

In Massachusetts, local communities reported 17,565 experienced homelessness on a single night in 2017, a decrease of 10.4 percent since past year.

Seventy-eight-year-old Theodore Neubauer sees the other side of it. Neubauer says he served in Vietnam but now lives in a tent in downtown Los Angeles.

Helping those like Neubauer is a top policy priority and political issue in Los Angeles.

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"Most of the time, beds are full and then we have a little bit of a waiting list as well", says James Whitford, Co-Founder/Executive Director of Watered Gardens Gospel Rescue Mission.

Since a year ago, voters in the city and Los Angeles County have passed a pair of tax-boosting ballot initiatives to raise an expected $4.7 billion over the next decade for affordable housing and services for the homeless.

Regardless of the national increase, U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Secretary David Shulkin said he believes VA's joint community-based homelessness efforts are working in most communities across the country. On a single night in January 2017, 853 Veterans were experiencing homelessness.

In contrast, the HUD report showed a long-running decline in homelessness continuing in most other regions.

Even with the increase, the number of homeless in Minnesota this year was 2.6 percent less than in 2010, which coincided with the national foreclosure crisis when many people lost their homes.

Those places that saw a dwindling homelessness included Atlanta, Philadelphia, Miami, the Denver area and Hawaii. A local point-in-time count was conducted in King County earlier this year.

But he added the rescue mission has put itself in the position to help more people.

The report is submitted to Congress and used by government agencies as a factor in distributing money for programs created to help the homeless.

Louisiana's homeless population declines almost 20% since 2016, according to HUD report