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Ohio's homeless population drops again, but housing problems remain

Ohio's homeless population drops again, but housing problems remain

The report showed Oakland, Denver, and Phoenix replaced Boston, Philadelphia, and the District of Columbia as the major cities with the largest numbers of homeless individuals. That figure is up almost 1 percent from 2016. The Obama administration aimed to end veterans' homelessness by matching an increase in funding with better coordination among federal agencies that deal with housing, health care and social services, and has largely reached that goal in such places as Akron and Dayton.

While the overall homeless population in California, Oregon and Washington grew by 14 percent over the past two years, the part of that population considered unsheltered climbed 23 percent to 108,000.

Of those, 35.6 percent (544) were unsheltered and 64.4 percent (985) were sheltered, the report stated.

Opportunities Inc., YWCA Mercy Home, St. Vincent de Paul, Volunteers of America, Family Promise and Voices of Hope 2-1-1 are working together to assess each homeless person, determine their needs and connect them to services needed to find them stable housing.

In Montana, there were 1,529 homeless reported in 2017, according to the HUD report, which was released Wednesday. Communities use the report while deciding how to allocate money and resources to combat homelessness.

Places where the numbers went down included Atlanta, Philadelphia, Miami, the Denver area and Hawaii, which declared a statewide homelessness emergency in 2015. The 5,485 unsheltered people counted in the county in 2017 represent a 21 percent increase over last year's tally. Homelessness among families with children declined 14.2 percent across the state since 2016.

For example, HUD showed 11,823 people in OH were homeless during a point-in-time count in 2014, Roth said.

The count of people on the street or staying at shelters and similar facilities in a single 24-hour period in January misses the many people who are staying with friends or couch-surfing because they lack permanent housing, Knestrick said. "With rents rising faster than incomes, we need to bring everybody to the table to produce more affordable housing and ease the pressure that is forcing too many of our neighbors into our shelters and onto our streets". Local Massachusetts communities also report the number of persons experiencing long-term chronic homelessness decreased. That's especially true on the West Coast.

City officials, homeless advocates and those living on the streets point to a main culprit: the region's booming economy. In San Diego, it's 61.6 percent.

Since past year, 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. Currently, there are 385 homeless veterans marking a 4.25 percent decrease since 2016 and an overall decrease of 68.7 percent since 2010.

For the first time since 2010, the number of homeless people in the USA increased this year, according to new estimates from the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). That figure is up nearly 1 percent from 2016 and marks the first increase in seven years.

The HUD report underscores the severity of the problem along the West Coast. Forty-three percent are unsheltered.

The number of families with children experiencing homelessness declined 8.8 percent since 2016 and 68.7 percent since 2010.

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