LANCASTER – Homelessness in the Antelope Valley increased nearly 3% over the past year to reach an estimated 3,293 people, according to data released Tuesday by the Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority.
“The news that homelessness has increased 2.8 percent in Antelope Valley is concerning, but not surprising,” said Elise Buik, President and CEO of United Way of Greater Los Angeles. “We are doing more than ever before, but the cost and limited availability of housing is a strong headwind.”
The full 2019 Greater Los Angeles Homeless Count report can be found on the LAHSA website [here]. The report helps determine how resources are distributed and provides insight into some of the root causes of homelessness, including housing affordability.
The overall data shows a drastic increase in homelessness across Los Angeles County — a 12% jump over the past year to reach an estimated 58,936 people.
“We have the largest unsheltered population in the nation and one of the largest homeless counts across America. Only New York has more people experiencing homelessness on any given night,” said LAHSA Executive Director Peter Lynn.
The numbers are up in LA County despite tens of thousands of people who have moved off the streets and into permanent housing. In the last year alone, the county has helped 21,631 people find permanent homes, while another 27,080 who were homeless at some point during the year were able to lift themselves out of homelessness, according to the data.
According to the figures for the Antelope Valley, roughly 1,171 homeless people are sheltered, while another 2,122 are unsheltered. The AV’s homeless population is 55% male and 44% female, with 1.5% identifying as transgender or gender non-conforming.
Other facts about the 2019 homeless population in the AV
- African Americans make up 38% of the homeless population, followed by whites at 30%, and Hispanic or Latino at 25%.
- 21% are under 18.
- 25% of homeless people age 18 and over suffer from serious mental illness.
- Homelessness among veterans decreased by 53% over the past year, dropping to 118.