2014 Annual Point in Time Count:
Veterans’ Homelessness Down 17 Percent
Total number of homeless remained stable, and homeless families increased
Hartford (May 16, 2014)
Connecticut is making significant strides forward in its goal to eliminate homelessness among veterans by 2015, but the state’s overall homeless population has not decreased in the last year, according to the results of the 2014 Connecticut Point in Time count. In addition, the number of homeless families increased in the last year, up 4.5 percent.
On the night of Jan. 29, 2014, when the statewide count was done, 3,571 people were in emergency shelters and similar facilities – nearly level with the count of sheltered homeless in 2013. The good news is that 221 total veterans were counted – a 17% decrease in the sheltered veteran population compared to 2013, and a 38% decrease since 2009.
The 2014 Connecticut Point-in-Time count (CT PIT 2014) marks Connecticut’s eighth annual count coordinated at a statewide level by the Connecticut Coalition
to End Homelessness (CCEH). CCEH conducted CT PIT 2014 on Wednesday, Jan. 29, 2014.
Under the count’s federal guidelines, this year it included only those adults and children who were homeless in emergency shelters, transitional housing programs, and domestic violence shelters. The “unsheltered count,” which CCEH leads in Connecticut every other year, includes a street count of adults and children living in places unfit for human habitations such as abandoned buildings and under bridges. The CT PIT 2015 will be the next unsheltered count of the homeless in Connecticut.
“There is great progress in Connecticut toward ending veteran homelessness,” said CCEH Executive Director Lisa Tepper Bates, “but there is more to be done to help families and singles in the general homeless population.”
On the night of Jan. 29, 2014 in Connecticut:
- TOTAL HOMELESS POPULATION 2014 UNCHANGED FROM 2013: 3,571 people were in emergency shelters and similar facilities – nearly level with the count of sheltered homeless in 2013.
- VETERAN HOMELESSNESS CONTINUES TO DECLINE: 221 total VETERANS were counted – a 17% decrease in the sheltered veteran population compared to 2013, and a 38% decrease since 2009.
- MORE PEOPLE ARE IN NEED OF EMERGENCY SHELTER: Emergency Shelters showed a 4% increase in persons sheltered compared to 2013.
- FAMILY HOMELESSNESS INCREASED OVER 2013: 458 FAMILIES were counted in emergency shelters – an increase of 4.5 percent from 2013.
- ONE IN FIVE HOMELESS PEOPLE IS A CHILD: 780 CHILDREN under the age of 18 were homeless – representing 22% of all persons counted.
- DOMESTIC VIOLENCE IS A STRONG CONTRIBUTING FACTOR TO HOMELESSNESS: 14% of the total sheltered adults reported domestic violence as a contributing factor to their homelessness.
Bates said that a strategy known as Rapid Re-‐Housing, which combines housing location services with targeted financial assistance to help people exit shelter and return to permanent housing, is showing good results across the nation in helping reduce homelessness.
“Conn is doing some good work in Rapid Re-‐Housing – we need to expand the volume of that work and bring down the numbers of Connecticut residents experiencing homelessness,” Bates said. At the same time, efforts must continue to identify those who are disabled and homeless for long periods of time, and who require housing subsidy and case management supports to achieve stability.
Since 2005, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) has required communities to report the number of people who are homeless in their communities on one night during the last week of January through a national “Point in Time” count. The collection of reliable data is essential to understanding the causes of homelessness and designing effective interventions to end homelessness in Connecticut and across the country.
PIT data for the state of Connecticut and for specific geographic regions can be downloaded from the CCEH website: http://bit.ly/1j2RZVO. For a breakdown of which communities are included in which report, visit: http://bit.ly/1nWXcPu For more information on the Connecticut PIT, visit http://bit.ly/1g2STN6