Charlotte City Councilmember Patsy Kinsey, Mecklenburg Board of County Commissioners Chairman Trevor Fuller, and Dr. Joan Lorden, Provost and Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs at UNC Charlotte made the joint announcement.
“We are especially grateful to Jeff Michael and his team at the Urban Institute who are helping us collect comprehensive data and organize it in an analytical framework that will help us make informed decisions as we move forward,” said Kinsey. “This partnership is critical to the success of implementing our 10-Year Plan as we focus on achieving specific and measureable results.”
Commissioner Fuller spoke about the results of the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Point In Time (PIT) count on January 29, 2014. The number of people who were counted as homeless on that night – 2,014 – showed a 17 percent decrease from the 2,418 counted in 2013. This year’s snapshot showed 404 fewer homeless counted.
A PIT count is required annually by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and is intended to provide a snapshot of how many people are sheltered in homeless programs and unsheltered on any given night.This is the first PIT report from the UNC Charlotte Urban Institute which provides context for the annual Charlotte-Mecklenburg PIT count findings.
This year’s PIT Count indicated a rise in veterans’ homelessness – from 120 counted in January 2013 to 157 counted in January 2014. There were 203 people counted as chronically homeless. HUD defines chronically homeless as an individual with a disability who has been homeless for one year or longer, or who has been homeless at least four times in the last three years.
“There is currently a focus locally and at the federal government level to end chronic homelessness and homelessness among military veterans,” Fuller said.
The Charlotte-Mecklenburg community has been working on an Acceleration to Housing initiative between the Veterans Administration, City, County, Charlotte Housing Authority and local homeless service providers. This initiative focuses on housing chronically homeless individuals, families and veterans. Recent results from that initiative show a total of 340 households, 440 individuals – including 57 veteran households– housed since May 2013.
“The report was made possible by a Catalyst Fund Grant from the Foundation for the Carolinas and it is part of a series of annual reports which will use data to enhance our understanding of the progress this community is making to end and prevent homelessness,”Dr. Joan Lorden said. “This reporting partnership allows UNC Charlotte to help identify solutions to critical and regional problems.”
The first annual PIT Count Report released today by the Urban Institute can be found athttp://ui.uncc.edu/story/charlotte-mecklenburg-point-time-count-report-2009-2014.