Veterans and Homelessness [March 25, 2015]   [open pdf - 531KB]

"The wars in Iraq and Afghanistan brought renewed attention to the needs of veterans, including the needs of homeless veterans. Researchers have found both male and female veterans to be overrepresented in the homeless population, and, as the number of veterans increased due to these conflicts, there was concern that the number of homeless veterans could rise commensurately. The 2007-2009 recession and the subsequent slow economic recovery also raised concerns that homelessness could increase among all groups, including veterans. […] Several issues regarding veterans and homelessness have become prominent, in part because of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars. One issue is ending homelessness among veterans. In November 2009, the VA announced a plan to end homelessness within five years. Both the VA [Department of Veterans Affairs] and HUD [Department of Housing and Urban Development] have taken steps to increase housing and services for homeless veterans. Funding for VA programs has increased in recent years (see Table 4), Congress has appropriated funds to increase available units of permanent supportive housing through the HUD-VASH [HUD-VA Supported Housing] program (see Table 5), and the number of veterans served in many programs has increased (see Table 6). Congress has appropriated a total of $575 million to support initial funding of HUD-VASH vouchers in each year from FY2008 through FY2015, enough to fund approximately 79,000 vouchers. Since the VA announced its plan, the HUD and VA point-in-time estimates of the number of veterans experiencing homelessness has fallen from 74,050 in 2009 to 49,933 in 2014 (see Table 1)."

Report Number:
CRS Report for Congress, RL34024
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