On any given night during the cold month of January, over 568,000 people experience the fear and discomfort of homelessness.
While homelessness rates fell between 2007 and 2019, the problem has started to increase again. According to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, in 2017, the U.S. began seeing a rise in homelessness year over year for the first time since the most devastating part of the housing crisis in 2010.
Homelessness also has a disproportionate effect across the nation. California, for example, saw a substantial 16% increase in 2019 over 2018. Cities also seem to struggle the most with a lack of housing for the most vulnerable. More than half of all homeless people (53%) are in the 50 largest U.S. cities.
While these numbers are alarming, they likely understate the true size of the problem. The very nature of stigma around homelessness makes people less likely to report how insecure their housing is.
For the full article, see this week’s edition of the Parke County Sentinel.