News Stories about Homelessness & Poverty

June 21, 2017:      From WAMU Radio –

Take One Down – Another Pops Up: Homeless Encampments in DC

FACTS & FIGURES (From the Community Partnership for the Prevention of Homelessness)

On any given night there are 7,784 homeless persons in the District of Columbia:

  • 544 unsheltered persons (i.e. persons “on the street”);
  • 5,085 persons in Emergency Shelters; and
  • 1,669 persons in Transitional Housing facilities.

2015 Point in Time Count of the Homeless (Washington Post 1-29-15)

Metro Washington Council of Governments Report on Homelessness (2015)

Click here for the .pdf version of the report.

HOMELESSNESS AND HUNGER IN DC

INCREASING NUMBERS. INCREASING NEED

The District of Columbia has experienced a significant increase in homelessness and poverty in the last few years as evidenced by the following:

  • One-fifth of DC residents live in poverty, and more than 57,000 individuals live in extreme poverty, unable to meet even their basic needs, including purchasing food. (DC Fiscal Policy Institute).
  • On any given night, there are over 7,300 individuals without homes in the District of Columbia. Families make up 40% of our homeless community. (The Community Partnership for the Prevention of Homelessness)
  • A lack of affordable housing and increasing rental prices are the two biggest obstacles to preventing and ending homelessness in the District. Since 2002, the District has lost 50% of its affordable housing while annual rent has increased by $3,000. (Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments)

Homeward DC: ICH Strategic Plan 2015 – 2020

Homeward DC, the ICH Strategic Plan (2015 – 2020), lays out a bold vision:

Together, we will end long-term homelessness in the District of Columbia. By 2020, homelessness in the District will be a rare, brief, and non-recurring experience.

The plan is built on three major goals:

  1. Finish the job of ending homelessness among Veterans by the end of 2015;
  2. End chronic homelessness among individuals and families by the end of 2017; and
  3. By 2020, any household experiencing housing loss will be rehoused within an average of 60 days or less.

The plan identifies a series of action items across five key strategies. The five key strategies are:

  1. Develop a more effective crisis response system;
  2. Increase the supply of affordable and supportive housing;
  3. Remove barriers to affordable and supportive housing;
  4. Increase the economic security of households in our system; and
  5. Increase prevention efforts to stabilize households before housing loss occurs.

We know that homelessness is solvable when we have a common vision, we keep a laser-like focus on outcomes, and we have the resources to get the job done. Together, we can ensure that homelessness in the District of Columbia is a rare, brief, and non-recurring experience.

Homeless Man Murdered in Glover Park

Click here for Washington Post coverage.

Click here for the follow-up story.

 

Arlington County to Open 24 Hour Homeless Shelter

Click here for the Washington Post coverage of Arlington County’s effort to provide a long term approach to chronic homelessness.