The number of homeless veterans has taken its biggest nose dive in more than five years.
According to the Department of Veterans Affairs, the Department of Housing and Urban Development and the U.S. Interagency Council on Homelessness, the preliminary results of the 2022 Point-in-Time Count show an 11% decline in veteran homelessness since early 2020, the last time a full count was conducted.
“The data released today shows we are closer than ever in ensuring that every veteran in America has a home and challenges us to ensure that every veteran — and every person in America — has a home,” said HUD Secretary Marcia Fudge in a Nov. 3 statement.
The data show on a single night in January 2022, there were 33,136 veterans who were experiencing homelessness in the United States — down from 37,252 in 2020. Overall, this represents a 55.3% reduction in veterans experiencing homelessness since 2010.
“One veteran experiencing homelessness will always be one too many, but the 2022 PIT Count shows that we are making real progress in the fight to end Veteran homelessness,” said VA Secretary Denis McDonough.
The 2022 PIT Count is the first full PIT Count since 2020 when the COVID-19 pandemic began. In 2021, many communities did not conduct unsheltered counts in order to stop or slow the spread of COVID-19, resulting in an incomplete picture of veteran homelessness in America.
“Not only did we lower the number of veterans experiencing homelessness, but we made this progress during a global pandemic and economic crisis,” said USICH Executive Director Jeff Olivet.
VA has also committed to re-housing 38,000 veterans this calendar year. Through September, VA has placed nearly 31,000 homeless veterans into permanent housing.
If you are a veteran who is experiencing homelessness or at risk for homelessness, call the National Call Center for Homeless Veterans at 877-424-3838. Visit the VA Homeless Programs website to learn about housing initiatives and other programs for veterans exiting homelessness.