Homelessness increased in the United States, especially among people with long-term disabling conditions according to HUD's Annual Homeless Assessment Report to Congress.
In Montana, there were 1,529 homeless reported in 2017, according to the HUD report, which was released Wednesday. That represents a.7 percent increase nationally over a year ago.
One of the major consequences of the homeless explosion in the West Coast is a deadly hepatitis A outbreak that prompted California officials to declare a state of emergency two months ago.
Kizer attributed the homeless increase to a lack of affordable housing in Great Falls.
The report comes as the homelessness population is on the rise on the West Coast.
Of those people experiencing homelessness, 41 percent were unsheltered, meaning they were staying in a public or private place not meant to accommodate a sleeping person, like a park bench or a auto.
- The number of families with children experiencing homelessness in 2017 ( 3,904 ), decreased by 15.2 percent ( or 700 persons ) since 2016 and decreased by 42.8 percent ( 2,923 ) since 2010.
"There are days when I don't want to wake up", said 30-year-old Ashley, who found herself homeless in July after being evicted and losing her job. Since 2010 homeless people in families decreased by 42.8 percent ( 2,923 ).
Skornogoski also noted a lot of people in the count are chronically homeless and have bigger picture problems such as substance abuse and mental health problems that need to be addressed.
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HUD's national estimate is based upon data reported by approximately 3,000 cities and counties across the nation.
-Tenth in the number of people in homeless families, 1,589. Every year on a single night in January, planning agencies called "Continuums of Care" and tens of thousands of volunteers seek to identify the number of individuals and families living in emergency shelters, transitional housing programs and in unsheltered settings.
Thirty states and the District of Columbia reported decreases in homelessness between 2016 and 2017, HUD officials said.
The increases are due largely to spikes in the number of unsheltered homeless, according to the report. "While we have made significant strides in reducing the number of individuals experiencing homelessness, we must remain committed to implementing strategies that make it a rare, brief and non-recurring event". Currently, there are 385 homeless veterans marking a 4.25 percent decrease since 2016 and an overall decrease of 68.7 percent since 2010.
Volunteers counted about 600 homeless military veterans.
In San Diego, the homeless population increased 5 percent.
In San Diego, the number of homeless veterans went down about 10 percent and now is 12 percent of the total homeless population.
The annual count found about 300 unaccompanied homeless IN youth and children.