The street census and survey of the homeless in Fulton and DeKalb counties will help those who plan and administer programs for the homeless to understand the scope of the problem, particularly among homeless veterans. Through the collection of “accurate data,” VA Secretary Eric Shinsecki wants to eliminate homelessness among veterans by the end of 2015. Statistics from the count and demographics among individuals and families that are homeless represent a vital part of the VA planning and program development to end homelessness.
For the first time, the Metro Atlanta Homeless Survey will be conducted on the same night as the street count. The survey includes demographic characteristics, homeless history and homeless experiences and veterans information. The survey also contains questions focused on young adults from 18 to 24 who are homeless.
The annual unsheltered count emphasizes locating and counting homeless individuals and families who are living without shelter and sleeping in outdoor locations such as sidewalks, parks, encampments and under bridges in Fulton and DeKalb counties. Specific locations within the jurisdictions that will be counted include Atlanta, north Fulton, south Fulton, north DeKalb, south DeKalb and central DeKalb.
The 2013 homeless count found 6,664 homeless persons sleeping on the streets. The 2013 count totals represented a steady decrease in the numbers of homeless individuals and families since the height of the recession in 2009.
Residents who would like to volunteer to assist with the count and survey can contact Josie Parker at (404) 639-9933, extension 323.