The homeless among us

Butte County homelessness survey shows their numbers have increased dramatically

The results of this year’s Butte County homelessness survey are in, and they’re not good. The number of homeless individuals increased by 350, a full 20 percent jump from January 2010 to January 2011.

The Butte Countywide Homeless Continuum of Care conducted the survey on Jan. 27. The one-day outreach effort yielded 1,410 surveys, which contained information about 1,772 homeless individuals on the day of the census. The number of additional homeless individuals tallied (unable to be contacted for full survey information) was 140, for a total of 1,912 homeless persons.

Here are some notable results from the 2011 survey:

• Respondents with children: 12%
• Living outdoors: 30%
• Sharing the housing of family or friends: 32%
• Lived in Butte County for five years or longer: 60%
• “Chronically homeless”: 18%
• Some college education: 27%
• Reporting no financial resources: 48%
• With pets: 24%
• With military service: 13%
• With a physical disability: 37%
• With mental illness: 28%
• Reporting “employment/ financial reasons” as the cause of homelessness: 53%
• Reporting “no job or income” as a barrier to accessing housing: 66%

Source: Butte Countywide Homeless Continuum of Care