- The best way to stop homelessness? Prevent it from happening in the first place.
- State & city efforts to prevent long-term homelessness have reduced homelessness nationwide by 1% over 2009-2011, but federal funding for these programs ended in September of 2012.
- Public based eviction prevention programs have been seriously stretched by the prolonged weak economic recovery.
- Most Cities have effective non-profit eviction prevention programs.
- Support Eva’s Village comprehensive anti-poverty & homelessness prevention programs by volunteering or donating.
Last January, 2012, the National Alliance to End Homelessness reported that the number of homeless in America decreased by about 1% over the period of 2009 to 20111, a remarkable achievement given one of the slowest economic recoveries on record — just after one of the worst recessions on record. The NAEH credits the decrease to stepped up efforts2 by the federal government to rapidly find affordable housing for the recently homeless.
Unfortunately, this national effort ended on September 30, 2012 at a time of increasing risk factors for homelessness. Specifically, over the same period, 2009 – 2011, the NAEH reports that because a greater share of Americans’ income now goes to paying the rent and mortgage, there has been a 13% increase in families sharing housing. Additionally the number of people living below the poverty rate has increased every year since 20093. While this data does not include 2012 trends, given even slower economic recovery this year compared to 2011 and 20104, we can assume the risk factors have, at the very least, remained elevated this year.