Submitted by San Juan County
The 2022 San Juan County “Point-In Time” Homeless Count identified 146 people who have no stable place to live, an increase from the 2020 count of 133.
Of the 146 people identified as having no stable place to live, 58 people were living out of doors, in vehicles, in abandoned buildings, or in an RV or boat that lacked one of the following: drinking water, a restroom, heat, the ability to cook food, or the ability to bathe.
The remaining 88 were at risk of homelessness. These families reside in temporary, unstable living arrangements with family and/or friends, or live in substandard housing. The 2020 count found 66 homeless and 67 at risk of homelessness. In 2019, the count found 67 people homeless and 82 at risk of homelessness. Due to COVID-19 concerns no Point in Time Count was held in Washington in 2021.
The one-night PIT Count is by definition variable and in San Juan County can fluctuate greatly from year to year. San Juan County has prioritized consistency in its PIT methodology as part of the County’s Five-Year Homeless Plan. The 2022 PIT year over year change of 10% from 2020 continues the trend of consistency and represents the smallest year over year change in the previous decade.
While the overall count did increase from the 2020 count, this year’s count was extremely similar to the 2019 count and the County saw the number of individuals considered homeless (rather than at-risk of homelessness) decline compared to 2020 and 2019.
The first San Juan County count, conducted in 2005 counted 21 homeless or at risk of homelessness. The numbers have varied with an overall upward trend since then. The state mandated count was conducted on Thursday, February 24. The count was initiated by the State of Washington in 2005, and the Washington State Department of Commerce oversees the count statewide.
Count organizers and volunteers worked with local family resource centers, food banks, churches, healthcare providers, senior centers, libraries, the sheriff’s office, schools and pre-schools and many other community support service providers to conduct the count. San Juan County Housing Program Coordinator Ryan Page extends to all the many volunteers involved in the count his sincerest thanks.
Results of previous counts can be viewed at http://www.commerce.wa.gov/serving-communities/homelessness/annual-point-time-count/
For more information, contact: Ryan Page, San Juan County Housing Program Coordinator, email@example.com, 360-370-0590.