Santa Monica Homeless Count Shows Four Percent Increase

March 6, 2018 7:33 PM

SANTA MONICA, Calif. – At tonight’s City Council meeting, the results of the January 24, 2018 Homeless Count were released showing a 4% increase in homelessness, or an increase of 36 individuals over last year. This comes amidst a regional homeless crisis with 57,000 (2017 regional count numbers) living without permanent shelter countywide.

Here’s a look at top line numbers, which will be further informed by the outcome of countywide results expected in late spring from the Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority (LAHSA).

Daytime demographic surveys of a smaller subset of the homeless population shed further light on who is coming into Santa Monica and from where:

“We are not backing down from the commitment we made in 2015 when we set homelessness as one of our top five areas of focus,” said Mayor Ted Winterer. “We have listened to residents through Community Conversations, we have new data to benchmark our efforts, and the investments we’re making are smart and nimble to meet the challenges of the changing realities of homelessness.”

This slight increase of 4% comes after last year’s 26% increase in Santa Monica and a 23% increase countywide. There are more people living on the streets, without shelter in every pocket of the 4,700 square miles that make up Los Angeles County. In 2016, voters passed two historic measures to combat this crisis – Measure H and HHH – with housing and a broad net of services to expand the safety net for a diverse homeless population with varying needs. Here are some of the new efforts underway.



“In my first month here, I’ve been moved by the passion across Santa Monica,” said Alisa Orduna, the City’s new Senior Advisor on Homelessness. “This energy will provide the momentum we need to support our homelessness neighbors while also playing a role in the regional effort to get people housed.”

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About the Homeless Count Methodology

Homeless counts are mandated by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. To conduct the Count, over 250 community volunteers and City staff covered each street in Santa Monica – a total of 226 linear miles – to tally homeless individuals sleeping outdoors, as well as in cars, RVs, and tents. Homeless persons in shelters, jails and hospitals were also counted at each facility. The Count is conducted overnight to better identify individuals sleeping in the City, and represents the number of people identified as experiencing homelessness on a single night. The Count is not a cumulative number of people who may experience homelessness throughout the year, nor does it fully represent the number of homeless people who may be present in the City during daytime hours, but sleep elsewhere.


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