Statewide Homeless Point-in-Time Count to be Conducted Wednesday

SALT LAKE CITY, UT – January 25, 2012 – (RealEstateRama) — Public, private and non-profit homeless service providers will conduct an annual Point-In-Time Count of the homeless population in Utah on Wednesday, Jan. 25, 2012.

“It is absolutely essential that we accurately characterize homelessness in Utah,” said Gordon Walker, director, Division of Housing and Community Development. “Gathering specific information on the number of families, veterans, and those suffering from domestic violence, mental illness, substance abuse, and other disabilities will allow us to address our homeless situation in the most effective and direct way.”

Every year the State of Utah participates in a physical count of all homeless individuals across the state to determine how many were homeless on a single night, or Point-In-Time Count. This year that count will take place on Wednesday, January 25. The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) requires that states complete a physical count of both sheltered and unsheltered homeless persons periodically. Utah has elected to conduct both counts every year.

Last year 3,114 homeless individuals were counted across Utah. From this it was projected that 14,351 people experienced homelessness in Utah throughout 2011.

Information from the Point-In-Time Count is used to determine the need and gaps in services across the state. Federal and state monies are allocated to different areas of the state based on the information gathered in this count. An accurate count will ensure the appropriate resources come to our community.

The Point-In-Time Count requires tremendous coordination. Its success is dependent on the collaboration and aid of several organizations such as Local Homeless Coordinating Committees, state agencies including the Utah Department of Veteran’s Affairs, police and sheriffs departments, religious leaders, hospitals and clinics, providers of homeless and domestic violence services and many volunteers.

The State of Utah Community Services office is managed by the Division of Housing and Community Development under the Utah Department of Community and Culture.

For more information and for ride-a-long inquiries in the Salt Lake County area media are encouraged to contact:
Rob Wesemann,
LPD Division Director,
Homeless Services,
Volunteers of America, Utah,
801-834-8271.

For information regarding other counties, please contact the appropriate LHCC lead listed on the following website: housing.utah.gov/scso

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