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Veteran Homelessness Decreases 18% in Los Angeles

May 31, 2018

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

VA Greater Los Angeles Healthcare System Press Release header. Office of Public Affairs Media Relations (310) 268-3340 VHAGLAPublicAffairs@va.gov

Veteran Homelessness Decreases 18% in Los Angeles

2018 PIT count reveals 18% decline in Veteran homelessness for LA County

LOS ANGELES – According to the Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority (LAHSA) 2018 Point-In-Time (PIT) count, Los Angeles County saw an 18 percent decline in Veteran homelessness, while overall homelessness remained steady.

“This decline is a testament to the hard-work of dedicated staff and successful partnerships” said Ann Brown, director at VAGLAHS. “While there is still more work to do, the decrease signals that our strategies are working – bringing us a little bit closer to ending Veteran homelessness in Los Angeles.”

In 2017, in partnership with VA’s National Homeless Program Office, VAGLAHS embarked on a systematic overhaul that included extensive data reconciliation efforts, redesigned program operations, and a focused effort on hiring additional staff, not the least of which included hiring a new leadership team to run our homeless operations.

“This year signals the irreversible momentum we have been working towards” said Heidi Marston, director of the Community Engagement and Re-integration Service (CERS) at VAGLAHS. “Despite the glaring housing market challenges, VA and community collaboration has helped more Veterans maintain housing, put more vulnerable Veterans into permanent supportive housing and integrated our systems to ensure a "no wrong door" approach for our Nation's heroes.”

Despite the tightening Los Angeles housing market and increased cost of living, VAGLAHS has placed over 2,100 Veterans into permanent housing in 2017 and served over 13,000 unique Veterans during 2017. We expect to see an unprecedented amount of affordable housing units coming on line through Measure H and Measure HHH, and the Draft Master Plan on West Los Angeles VA campus. The decrease in Veteran homelessness shown in the 2018 PIT count is just the beginning of what’s to come.

ABOUT VAGLAHS HOMELESS VETERAN PROGRAM: Community Engagement and Reintegration Service (CERS) is the largest VA homeless program in the country with over 600 staff, a budget of $150 million, and resources to house over 9,000 homeless Veterans through emergency, transitional and permanent housing. CERS also provides a variety of services to include short term treatment programs, primary care, walk in centers, justice diversion and interventions, and employment. Seven distinct programs fall within CERS care line and provide services across the Greater Los Angeles VA Healthcare System’s 5-county catchment. Within all programs, CERS collaborates with community partners and government agencies to include Los Angeles County, City of Los Angeles, and the Los Angeles Continuum of Care Lead: Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority (LAHSA). For more information, call (310) 478-3711 or visit us at www.losangeles.va.gov. Veterans in need can call the VA hotline toll-free at 877-4-AID-VET.

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