The Stanislaus Community System of Care (CSOC) has released its 2023 Point-In-Time (PIT) homeless count, identifying 2,091 homeless persons in Stanislaus County, an increase of 234 people from last year’s total count. The results were released on Friday, May 19.
“Homelessness affects all of us. The PIT Count is an important resource to gauge how many people are experiencing homelessness in our communities,” said Emily Webster, Vice-Chair of CSOC. “The information helps us develop support services and housing to help this population.”
The PIT count is an unduplicated count of sheltered and unsheltered people experiencing homelessness on a single night in January. The US Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) requires that communities conduct an annual count of people experiencing homelessness who are sheltered in emergency shelter, transitional housing, and Safe Havens on one night.
Last year’s count was 1,857 people, down from the previous year due to challenges including the COVID-19 pandemic and the scheduling of the count, along with fewer volunteers to perform the snapshot homeless survey. A total of 2,927 homeless people were counted in 2021.
The Sheltered Count was conducted on the evening of Wednesday, Jan. 25, 2023, and the Unsheltered Count on Thursday, Jan. 26, 2023.
Figures show that the count included 22 homeless in Oakdale; 18 in Riverbank.
PIT COUNT HIGHLIGHTS
Who are the Homeless?
• 71 percent of those surveyed identified as White while 63 percent identified as Non-Hispanic/Non-Latin and 37 percent as Hispanic/Latin.
• The majority of the homeless counted were males, a total of 1,345. Females made up 731 of the count.
• The largest age group was 35-44 with a total of 501 people.
• 45 percent of homeless surveyed said they spent time in jail or prison; 43 percent said they had stayed in a hospital overnight; and 21 percent reported that they had been in a treatment center.
• 73 percent responded that they first became homeless in Stanislaus County; 62 percent said they had been homeless for more than 36 months in the community.
• 101 veterans made up 9 percent of the community sheltered population.
Where are the Homeless?
• The City of Modesto, the seat of Stanislaus County, had the largest number of homeless surveyed with 1,642 people. The City of Turlock was second with 233 people.
• 55 percent of the count (1,142 people) came from the sheltered population – congregate shelters, transitional housing, and hotel/motel voucher programs – while 45 percent (949 people) came from the count of people living on the streets, in parks, abandoned buildings, or in their cars.
• 40 percent of the Unsheltered population of 949 people told surveyors they slept on the streets or on sidewalks.
• 69 percent of the 1,142 Sheltered population stayed in Emergency Shelter while 19 percent stayed in Transitional Housing.
What are the Reasons for Becoming Homeless?
• 27 percent said they were asked to leave from the place they were staying.
• 26 percent responded there was abuse and violence in the home.
• 23 percent said they were unable to pay rent/mortgage.
What are the Obstacles to Accessing Services?
• 15 percent said they didn’t have identification or documents.
• 13 percent said lack of transportation.
• 11 percent said they didn’t know where to go for help.
Other Homeless Populations (Adults Only)
• 23 percent had a serious mental illness.
• 16 percent had a substance use disorder.
• 12 percent were survivors of domestic violence.
• 2 percent had HIV/AIDS.
The annual count data is critical to determine the scope of homelessness, define existing resources, and identify any gaps in services in Stanislaus County. HUD requires communities to count the number of people experiencing homelessness every two years in each county across the United States.
The survey data is used to help determine the amount of funding available to communities to develop housing and supportive services for people moving from homelessness to being housed. The information helps service providers, policy makers, funders and local government gain a better understanding of the population currently experiencing homelessness.
The 2023 Homeless Shelter Count was organized by the Stanislaus Community System of Care (CSOC) which includes local governments, non-profits, and homeless providers. For more information, visit www.csocstan.com.