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.



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.