Feds plan landmark study of homeless populations in 30 communities

Don’t be surprised if someone with a clipboard approaches you in the next few months and asks whether you have a place to sleep.

See Full Article

The federal government said Wednesday that it will conduct a landmark “Point-in-Time” count of homelessness in 30 Canadian communities during a single 24-hour period, sometime before April 30.

The purpose of a PiT count is to identify nearly all individuals who are sleeping in emergency shelters or outdoors, and to survey the homeless population to determine risk factors, demographics and local needs.

PiT surveyors, who are often volunteers, will ask everyone they see outside a small number of questions to determine whether they fit the definition of homelessness.

Those who do may be asked their age, gender, aboriginal identity, and whether they are veterans.

They will also be asked whether they’re sleeping in bus shelters, vehicles, tents, abandoned buildings or emergency shelters.

And they may answer questions about what might have caused them to lose their home. For example, did they have an illness or addiction, face eviction from an apartment, experience a job loss or flee domestic abuse?

Jesse Donaldson, the PiT count coordinator for the Canadian Observatory on Homelessness at York University in Toronto, said the establishment of a federal count will allow those working to end homelessness learn more about the population they’re trying to help and measure whether particular interventions are working.

“It allows communities to make adjustments (and) try different solutions,” Donaldson said. “To know: ‘Is what we’re doing working?’”

Minister of Families, Children and Social Development Jean-Yves Duclos said in a statement that the count will give communities “a better understanding of homelessness and will develop the necessary supports where they are most needed.”

The federal government’s Homelessness Partnering Strategy (HPS) is providing $600 million over five years (from 2014-19), according to the statement.

The HPS pivoted to a “Housing First” approach in 2013. “This primarily involves moving individuals who are chronically or episodically homeless from the streets or homeless shelters directly into permanent housing,” according to Employment and Social Development Canada.

Donaldson said the federal PiT count will increase the number of communities where quality data is available, and improve estimates of the scope of the problem.

According to the Homeless Hub’s 2014 State of Homelessness in Canada report:

  • An estimated 35,000 Canadians are homeless on a given night.
  • About 13,000 to 33,000 are chronically or episodically homeless.
  • Roughly 235,000 Canadians experience homelessness in a given year.
  • About 180,000 of those homeless in a given year end up in emergency shelters.
  • Approximately 50,000 of them end up in provisional housing like motels and on couches.
  • An estimated 5,000 of them end up sleeping outside of a shelter.
  • There are about 544,000 units of social housing funded by federal and provincial governments, compared to 700,000 in 1993.


Advertisements

Latest Canada & World News

  • Presidential inaugural committee 'blatantly' enriched Trump family: D.C. attorney general

    World News CBC News
    The District of Columbia is suing U.S. President Donald Trump's inaugural committee and two companies that control the Trump International Hotel in the nation's capital, accusing them of throwing parties for the Trump family with non-profit funds, and overpaying for event space at the hotel. Source
  • Survivor recounts confused, chaotic cult rite that killed 7

    World News CTV News
    SANTIAGO, PANAMA -- A survivor of the cult ceremony that killed her daughter and six other people in a remote village in Panama says she was ordered to close her eyes, was beaten and knocked unconscious during the ritual. Source
  • Former soldier, alleged neo-Nazi Patrik Mathews denied bail in U.S.

    Canada News CTV News
    GREENBELT, MD. -- Former Canadian army reservist and accused white supremacist Patrik Mathews was denied bail following an appearance this morning in a U.S. court. Mathews and two other men were arrested last week after the former combat engineer disappeared from his residence in Manitoba amid allegations he was a recruiter for a white-supremacist called The Base. Source
  • Man wins new sex assault trial over poor Swahili-English translation

    Canada News CTV News
    TORONTO -- A man convicted of sexually assaulting his wife has won a new trial because of problems with the Swahili interpreter he was provided. In overturning his conviction, an Ontario Superior Court justice found the interpreter's incompetence and the trial judge's failure to address the situation breached the man's charter rights. Source
  • Unprovoked shark attacks drop worldwide, but not in the U.S.

    World News CTV News
    GAINESVILLE, FLA. -- Unprovoked shark attacks around the world decreased last year, although they rose in the United States, according to researchers. There were 64 confirmed unprovoked shark attacks worldwide last year, compared to the most recent five-year-average of 82 unprovoked attacks, according to researchers with the International Shark Attack File. Source
  • Worker in Ohio dies after falling into vat of acid, officials investigate

    World News CTV News
    DAYTON, OHIO -- A worker fell into a chemical vat at a business in Ohio and died, authorities said. Dana Swisher, 60, of Union, fell into the vat at Techmetals Inc. on Tuesday, Montgomery County Coroner Dr. Source
  • UN experts: Jeff Bezos phone hack shows link to Saudi prince

    World News CTV News
    DUBAI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES -- The phone of Amazon billionaire and Washington Post owner Jeff Bezos was hacked after receiving a file sent from an account used by Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, United Nations experts alleged Wednesday. Source
  • Justice minister calls for tougher penalties to address 'crime crisis' in rural Alberta

    Canada News CTV News
    CALGARY -- Alberta’s Justice Minister is expected to focus in on rural crime in a meeting with his provincial, territorial and federal counterparts in Victoria, B.C. Wednesday. In a letter sent to federal Justice Minister & Attorney General David Lametti in December, Doug Schweitzer wants to see amendments to the criminal code to tackle “skyrocketing” crime rates in many of Alberta’s rural communities. Source
  • Indigenous pipeline supporters slam human-rights advocates over Coastal GasLink stance

    Canada News CBC News
    A collective of First Nations who support the liquefied natural gas industry in British Columbia say human rights advocates failed to do their research when they called for the Coastal GasLink pipeline project to be halted. The First Nations LNG Alliance has issued open letters to the B.C. Source
  • Attacking coyote that was strangled by victim had rabies

    World News CTV News
    CONCORD, N.H. -- A coyote that was strangled by a man after attacking his child had rabies, and it may not be the only one, according to the New Hampshire Fish and Game Department. Police said they believe the coyote attacked a vehicle on a road in Hampton Falls, bit a 62-year-old woman and her dogs on a porch in Kensington and then attacked a family walking on a trail in Exeter on Monday. Source