Homelessness in Arizona has increased by 10% according to a new federal government report.
The AHAR (Annual Homeless Assessment Report) is a study produced each year by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. Although it found a slight decline in the nationwide count of people experiencing homelessness, Arizona’s results dramatically increased. Perhaps most disturbing is the finding that 2,606 families with children were living on the street at the time the data collected. Experts agree the real number is probably much higher.
An article in the Dec. 26 Arizona Republic quoted UMOM CEO Darlene Newsom saying, “Here in Arizona, we’ve got the perfect storm. We’ve got the lack of investment and lack of services for homelessness. It continues year after year, so it’s just going to climb.”
To make matters worse, families are now waiting as long as 11 weeks to access shelter and services.