Florida's Homeless To Get Help From HUD

The County's Continuum of Care program received almost $400,000 in federal funding to help end homelessness and fund emergency domestic violence services and enhance coordination among local agencies that handle those issues according to El Dorado County officials.

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development announced a total of $2 billion for its 2017 round of funding, which will go to 7,300 programs nationally that provide services, shelter and housing. "We know how to end homelessness and it starts with embracing a housing-first approach that relies upon proven strategies that offer permanent housing solutions to those who may otherwise be living in our shelters and on our streets".

The largest share of those funds, more than $380 million, went to California for 900 programs, almost half of which went to the Southern California area.

"This funding is critical to local MA programs that are on the front lines of helping those who might otherwise be living on our streets", said David Tille, HUD New England regional administrator, in a statement. Local Massachusetts communities also report the number of persons experiencing long-term chronic homelessness decreased.

According to HUD Florida has an estimated homeless population of a little over 32,000 people which is down about 4 percent from 2016 numbers. While homelessness among families with children declined 5.4 percent nationwide since 2016, local communities report long-term chronic homelessness increased.

HUD's 2017 data show that there was a significant increase in the number of reported persons experiencing unsheltered homelessness, particularly in California and other high-cost rental markets that lack affordable housing.

In Florida, there were nearly 32,200 people who experienced homelessness previous year, a decline of 4 percent. HUD estimates there were 17,565 persons experiencing homelessness in MA on a single night in 2017, a decrease of 10.4 percent since the prior year.

Vanessa Coleman