Homeless Survey Results Revealed
GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. - Members of the Grand Valley Coalition for the Homeless met today to discuss the results of the Point-in-Time Survey.
Members of the coalition, which include several police officers, helped hand out the surveys to the homeless.
The survey was taken on January 22 by 360 individuals who were either staying at a shelter or on the streets.
Officials believe that the actual number of homeless in Grand Junction is greater than this number because the survey did not include "Couch Surfers," or people who found a hotel or place to stay.
"The school district knows of many families that are couch surfing," said Coalition Chair Sister Karen Bland. "They go from one place to another, night after night."
Sister Bland believes the extreme cold on January 22 also contributed to the small number of homeless in the survey.
The results show that 11% of the homeless are under 18, while 24% are under 25.
Officials say the number of homeless veterans has decreased over the past year thanks to programs like Vouchers for Veterans put on by the VA.
Nearly half of the individuals who took the survey said they have some sort of disability, with chronic physical illness being the most common.
Another important issue discussed at the meeting was the funds spent on multiple trips to the hospital.
The survey reports 19% of the homeless visited the emergency room three or more times in the past year.
Going forward, Sister Bland says the coalition will continue to study the results so they can find the best way to solve the homeless problem.
"We are going to continue our efforts to try and provide housing for people who are homeless who want to move form that situation," said Bland.