The following websites contain a treasure trove of information!
The National Alliance to End Homelessness is a nonpartisan organization committed to preventing and ending homelessness in the United States. There website at https://endhomelessness.org/ contains a wealth of information! A good window into their work is the article, Creating Systems That Work.
Portland State University's Homelessness Research & Action Collaborative
Portland State University’s Homelessness Research & Action Collaborative
The Homelessness Research & Action Collaborative brings together expertise and skills from across Portland State University and the country to collaborate with people experiencing homelessness, advocates, service providers, leaders, and other stakeholders.
Our goal is to reduce homelessness and its negative impact on individuals, families and communities with an emphasis on communities of color through solutions-oriented research
and evidence-based science. You can learn more about our research, evaluation, and impact in our annual report for fiscal year 2020.
Visit the website here.
Homeless Hub - a Canadian research institute that is a fantastic source of information on homelessness
The Canadian Observatory on Homelessness (COH) is a non-partisan research and policy partnership between academics, policy and decision makers, service providers and people with lived experience of homelessness. We work in collaboration with partners to conduct and mobilize research designed to have an impact on solutions to homelessness. Housed at York University, the COH evolved out of a 2008 Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council funded project called the Canadian Homelessness Research Network. Led by Dr. Stephen Gaetz, CEO & President, the COH collaborates with partners to conduct and mobilize research that contributes to better, more effective solutions to homelessness.
My suggestion is to start here at Homelessness 101: https://www.homelesshub.ca/about-homelessness/homelessness-101.
Oregon Point in Time Count (PIT)
“The Point-in-Time (PIT) count is a count of sheltered and unsheltered people experiencing homelessness that HUD requires each Continuum of Care (CoC) nationwide to conduct in the last 10 days of January each year.” For more details click here.
Oregon has one of the highest rates of homelessness of all states. See https://www.security.org/resources/homeless-statistics/.
The Oregon Housing & Community Services website contains the repository for Oregon’s latest counts. See https://www.oregon.gov/ohcs/homelessness/Pages/index.aspx. However, at some point they (1) migrated to Tableau as the data presentation tool and (2) stopped posting the underlying data in spreadsheet format. From my perspective the Tableau presentations they provide make it very difficult for me to fully understand the unsheltered situation in Clatsop County and/or the state itself. It doesn’t stand out from the presentation but Clatsop County continues to have the highest per capita rate of homelessness in the state. The following are recent PIT counts for Clatsop County by year:
- 2017: 680
- 2018: 790
- 2019: 894
- 2020: 1,000+
During the May 13, 2021 Seaside Forum on Homelessness, Viviana Matthews, Executive Director of Clatsop Community Action (CCA), reported there were over one thousand homeless in the county for the 2020 PIT count. CCA is responsible for the count in this area. As of June 1, 2021 the state is still reporting the 2019 count as the latest. See https://youtu.be/8zerK2nMXpo?t=1396.
In the 2019 PIT count (the latest count published as of 6/1/2021) Clatsop County still has the highest rate of homelessness in Oregon. It’s also significantly higher than other rural counties.
Get the document here.
Via personal email from Megan Boltan, OHCS Research Analyst, I did obtain the 2018 spreadsheet format PIT data. It can be retrieved at 2018-point-in-time-homeless-count PIT – All Summaries by County 2018_External. I did add two sheets to graph the counties based on per capita rates. I’ve never been able to obtain the 2017 & 2019 spreadsheet data.
While the information is somewhat dated, I find the 2017 Homeless by County – Oregon Public Health Division report to still be informative. It compares rates of homelessness across Oregon’s counties. There is the valid argument that the rate of homelessness is higher in rural counties, however, Clatsop far eclipses other rural Oregon counties.
Spreadsheet PIT data from 2009 to 2015 can be found at the Internet Archive’s WayBack Machine. The following is a snapshot from January 10, 2019 (opens in new browser tab/window and will be slow as it accesses the archive): https://web.archive.org/web/20190110192830/http://www.oregon.gov/ohcs/Pages/research-point-in-time-homeless-count-in-oregon.aspx. The spreadsheets for 2012 to 2014 do not break the data down by county.
The PIT data contains counts of the unsheltered, not rates (i.e. per capita). The best source of Oregon’s population (aggregate and by county) is from Portland State University’s Population Research Center at https://www.pdx.edu/population-research/. Combining the PIT and the population data can provide per capita rates.