Homelessness on the rise in Orange County

ORANGE COUNTY (June 26, 2018) -- Orange County reported 152 people experiencing homelessness in the annual Point-in-Time (PIT) count, an increase from 127 people reported last year. Since 2010 there has been a 13% increase in the overall number, from 135 in 2010 to 152 this year.

“We are not happy to see the Point-in-Time number increase, but we would rather have an accurate number that is high than any kind of inaccurate number," said Corey Root, Homeless Programs Coordinator for Orange County. "We have identified key funding and service gaps in our system that will help reduce homelessness once they are addressed."

homeless_info2018Orange County has an array of service providers and programs, including shelter, transitional housing, rapid re-housing and permanent supportive housing, that serve people experiencing homelessness.

Of the 152 people reported homeless this year, 39 were living on the streets and 113 were in a shelter or transitional housing. The majority of people homeless in Orange County were found to be:

  • Living in adults-only households
  • Male
  • Over age 25

While the overall number rose, the number of chronic homeless has dropped by 50 percent since 2010. Chronic homeless are people with a disability who have been homeless for a long time. Of the total PIT count, 19 people (13%) are chronically homeless.

“Our drop in chronic homelessness is partially due to the innovative efforts of many service providers who come together each month to address the particular needs of this group and partially to devoting homeless service funding to programs that address chronic homelessness,” said Root.

Twelve of the people reported homeless (8%), are veterans, and 32 people (21%) live in families.

The Point-in-Time count is an unduplicated count of households that are homeless – both people living in places not meant for human habitation and those living in a shelter or transitional housing.

The 2018 PIT count was held Jan. 31, 2018. Volunteers fanned out across Orange County that night to locate people living on the streets. In addition, service agencies counted people experiencing homelessness who presented for services.

The Orange County Partnership to End Homelessness coordinates the Point-in-Time count each year. OCPEH is a coalition of housing and service providers, local governments and the broader community working together to prevent and end homelessness in Orange County.