San Antonio's Total Homeless Population Down, but Homeless Families Up

The number of homeless people in San Antonio is down overall, but the city is seeing an increase in homeless families, News Radio 1200 WOAI reports.

Chelsey Viger of the South Alamo Regional Alliance on Homelessness today released the results of the annual 'point in time' homeless county which was completed in January.

"There was a six percent reduction in overall homelessness, and a 12% reduction in unsheltered homelessness," she said.

She credits all of the social services in the county for their pro active stance on reaching out to the homeless, and the willingness of the Haven for Hope to take in homeless people.

She says the count mainly covered adult homelessness. She says younger people are harder to count.

"We have challenges with counting our youth, due to the fact that we have a lot of youth couch surfing in the community."

That is when a young person who is technically homeless is living with a variety of different friends and relatives.

The number of chronically homeless people, people who are chronically homeless or have a disability which contributes to homelessness is down 28% in since the 2018 point in time count. She credits aggressive outreach programs. The same with veteran homelessness, which is down by 6%.

The disturbing 18% increase in homeless families is largely due to rising rent and mortgage costs, and the city's lack of a Homeless Prevention and Diverson Fund in Bexar County, which can be put to use helping people who are strugging to hold onto their home stay under that roof.

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