State Representative Dave Yaccarino (R-87) joined constituents to volunteer for the 2019 Point-In-Time Count on Wednesday, January 16, in order to gather data on how many people are experiencing homelessness in our community and across the state.
Every year, the State of Connecticut conducts an annual census of people who are experiencing homelessness, including a one-night count of adults and families with children and a week-long count of unaccompanied youth. These counts provide two of the sources of data that are used to measure the extent of homelessness in the state, and enables a comparison of how homelessness is trending from year-to-year. Like all states and communities, Connecticut is also required to report this data to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, who will use it to compile its Annual Assessment of Homelessness Report to Congress.
“The way to end homelessness is by finding people homes. Unfortunately, becoming homeless is something that could happen to anyone. Even though we have safety nets, sadly people fall through the cracks of society,” said Rep. Yaccarino.
“That is why I was happy to join the Point-In-Time Count effort to locate homeless in the New Haven area and help them find housing. While out speaking to homeless people on the streets and warming centers, I came in contact with a homeless veteran, and later put him in contact with a representative from Columbus House in New Haven, which is now working to find him a bed and job counseling,” added Rep. Yaccarino. “I was impressed by how many young adults volunteered. We must do as much as possible to prevent homelessness.”
“The Point-in-Time Count and the Youth Outreach and Count help us to measure how well our coordinated system is working to reduce homelessness in our state and also impacts the amount of funding we receive from the federal government,” explains Richard Cho, CEO of the Connecticut Coalition to End Homelessness. “We praise our elected leaders for participating in these counts as a way to demonstrate their commitment to the vision that no one in Connecticut should be without a safe and stable home.”
Connecticut has been a national leader in ending homelessness, having reduced the number of people experiencing homelessness by 25 percent since 2007. Connecticut is one of three states that has been recognized for effectively ending homelessness among veterans, and is working with partners across the state to end homelessness among families, youth, and children by 2020. The Connecticut Coalition to End Homelessness is a leader in the statewide effort to end homelessness, works closely with homeless service providers to coordinate the delivery of evidence-based services to prevent homelessness whenever possible or when not preventable, to ensure that it is brief and a one-time experience.
Anyone currently experiencing homelessness, at risk of homelessness, or in need of housing assistance should contact 2-1-1 where they will speak with a housing specialist who will connect them to the appropriate regional Coordinated Access Network.
To learn more about what the state is doing to end homelessness and to get involved in the solution, visit the Connecticut Coalition to End Homelessness at www.CCEH.org.