Homelessness in the U.S. reached an eight-year high in 2022, according to the U.S Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).
The homeless population reached 582,462 people in January, a 0.3% increase from 2020, which represents the highest number of homeless people since 2014, when 578,424 people were reported homeless, according to HUD data from single-night annual homeless assessment reports from 2014 to 2022. (RELATED: San Francisco Spends Millions To House — And Then Evict — Its Homeless)
Single individuals and chronically homeless individuals accounted for the majority of the increase, as single individuals increased by 3.1% and chronically homeless individuals increased by 16% between 2020 and 2022, according to the report. Though the homeless population as a whole continues to rise, the number of homeless veterans decreased by 11%, the number of families with children experiencing homelessness declined by 6% and the number of people under the age of 25 who experienced homelessness declined by 12%.
The 2022 Point-in-Time Count of people experiencing homelessness on a single night is here—and it’s the first complete one since the start of the pandemic.
The data shows the overall number of people experiencing homelessness has increased by 0.3 percent since 2020. pic.twitter.com/pBllfHgZxh
— Department of Housing and Urban Development (@HUDgov) December 19, 2022
As the homeless population continues to grow, many cities have implemented different methods to address the issue. In Seattle, the King County Council proposed a 500-person homeless megaplex in the Chinatown International District (Chinatown-ID). Many residents pushed back against the plan, saying the megaplex would be the final blow to an already struggling community.
In Los Angeles, newly elected Democratic Mayor Karen Bass announced a homelessness state of emergency earlier this month. Los Angeles previously attempted to curb its homeless population by providing emergency vouchers for the homeless, but only 6% of the 3,365 emergency housing vouchers were ever used.
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