Homeless Population by State

Homelessness in the U.S. is an issue that came about as a result of increasing urbanization in the 1870s when people moved from rural regions to the cities in search of new opportunities. Homelessness today is also primarily concentrated in cities, with New York City playing host to 1/5th of America’s total homeless population. In total, the number of people experiencing homelessness in the U.S. is 552,830 as of 2022. The majority of this population (89.7%) are as young as 24 years or more. Furthermore, official figures show that up to 40% of all homeless men are veterans. 

The government has not been sitting on its hands regarding this issue though, as both houses of the legislature have proposed bills to combat homelessness. The most recent legislation that passed the house in 2021 is the Build Back Better Act, which aims to increase the availability of affordable housing and reduce the issue of homelessness at the source. The Better Care, Better Jobs Act has been introduced in both the House and the Senate and aims to improve healthcare availability for the homeless. It also includes support for housing services for those homeless in acute need of it. A poll by YouGov America found that 69% of the population believes that the federal government should do more to tackle homelessness, with 66% urging more action from state governments too. 

To learn more about this issue, you can refer to the data displayed in the charts. 

Homeless Population by State

Alabama - Homeless Population

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3,351

#29 in the US

HOMELESS HOUSEHOLDShelp

267

#31 in the US

CHRONIC HOMELESSNESShelp

503

#31 in the US

HOMELESS YOUNG ADULT POPULATIONhelp

175

#34 in the US

Although the Alabama homeless population of 3,351 is relatively low which positions the state at number 29, the state government takes the issue seriously. It is seen as being closely intertwined with mental health and substance abuse problems and tackling those issues and the lack of housing simultaneously. In 2021, they received federal funding for transitional housing, emergency shelter, and rental assistance to help people that were already experiencing homelessness or at risk of becoming homeless.

Alaska - Homeless Population

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1,949

#40 in the US

HOMELESS HOUSEHOLDShelp

160

#40 in the US

CHRONIC HOMELESSNESShelp

357

#39 in the US

HOMELESS YOUNG ADULT POPULATIONhelp

188

#33 in the US

Ranked 40, the Alaska homeless population is 1,949. The state declared their homelessness problem a humanitarian crisis in 2022, especially since their subzero winter temperatures have led to the untimely death of those forced to sleep on the streets. Determined to prevent such scenarios from unfolding again, the state has allocated millions of dollars in funding for emergency cold weather response, temporary shelter locations, and affordable rental units, as well as outreach programs.

Arizona - Homeless Population

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10,979

#9 in the US

HOMELESS HOUSEHOLDShelp

809

#15 in the US

CHRONIC HOMELESSNESShelp

2,086

#9 in the US

HOMELESS YOUNG ADULT POPULATIONhelp

633

#12 in the US

The Arizona homeless population is significant: 10,979 people do not have a home, which positions the state at number 9. Legislators passed a bill in 2022 that allowed cities and municipalities to set up sanctioned homeless camps and enforce street camping bans. Cities and municipalities had some freedom as to how to design these camps, as long as they provided food, water, storage, and space to assemble, as well as other services such as mental health and case management.

Arkansas - Homeless Population

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2,366

#37 in the US

HOMELESS HOUSEHOLDShelp

101

#45 in the US

CHRONIC HOMELESSNESShelp

514

#30 in the US

HOMELESS YOUNG ADULT POPULATIONhelp

262

#24 in the US

The Arkansas homeless population of 2,366 increased rapidly during the pandemic, despite an eviction moratorium in the state. Loitering and panhandling - often associated with homelessness - are criminalized statewide. Yet Arkansas seems to want to make healthcare easily accessible to its homeless population, having just expanded certain Medicaid programs to help vulnerable populations such as those at risk of or experiencing homelessness.

California - Homeless Population

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161,548

#1 in the US

HOMELESS HOUSEHOLDShelp

8,030

#2 in the US

CHRONIC HOMELESSNESShelp

51,785

#1 in the US

HOMELESS YOUNG ADULT POPULATIONhelp

12,172

#1 in the US

Coming in the first place, the California homeless population of 161,548 is the highest in the country. The state has a significant homeless population, especially in major cities such as Los Angeles and San Francisco. The state had budgeted billions of dollars to help curb homelessness, which individual cities and counties can secure if they submit plans that will significantly decrease their homeless populations. Yet Governor Newsom has rejected current applications, saying their progress would not be fast enough and sending all applicants back to the drawing board.

Colorado - Homeless Population

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9,846

#13 in the US

HOMELESS HOUSEHOLDShelp

665

#18 in the US

CHRONIC HOMELESSNESShelp

2,954

#7 in the US

HOMELESS YOUNG ADULT POPULATIONhelp

562

#14 in the US

Between 2007 and 2021, the Colorado homeless population increased more than in any other state: it is now at 9,846, which positions the state at number 13. Two bills passed earlier this year - HB22-1378 and SB22-211- allocated funding for the creation of two campuses to help transition people out of homelessness. These campuses offer housing, behavioral health services, and job training to people currently experiencing homelessness.

Connecticut - Homeless Population

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2,905

#33 in the US

HOMELESS HOUSEHOLDShelp

306

#25 in the US

CHRONIC HOMELESSNESShelp

177

#45 in the US

HOMELESS YOUNG ADULT POPULATIONhelp

148

#37 in the US

The Connecticut homeless population is relatively low: 2,905 individuals do not have shelter, ranking the state at number 33. Connecticut could become the first US state to establish a legal right to housing. The aim of a 2022 bull, SB168, is to implement policies that “respect, protect and fulfill a right to affordable, decent, safe and stable housing” for every Connecticut resident - including by affording protections to people at risk of losing their homes and providing rehousing assistance. Similar bills were introduced in 2020 and 2021 but were not enacted.

Delaware - Homeless Population

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1,165

#44 in the US

HOMELESS HOUSEHOLDShelp

136

#42 in the US

CHRONIC HOMELESSNESShelp

267

#40 in the US

HOMELESS YOUNG ADULT POPULATIONhelp

43

#48 in the US

The Delaware homeless population (now 1,165) has doubled over the past two years. The state is ranked 44. Lawmakers attempted to pass a special bill of rights for homeless people at the start of 2022 but were stranded in the House Judiciary Committee due to opposition from landlords and municipalities who feared unintended consequences.

Florida - Homeless Population

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27,487

#3 in the US

HOMELESS HOUSEHOLDShelp

2,294

#4 in the US

CHRONIC HOMELESSNESShelp

5,182

#4 in the US

HOMELESS YOUNG ADULT POPULATIONhelp

1,331

#5 in the US

Coming in third place, the Florida homeless population is high: 27,487 are living on the streets. With the numbers on the rise since the start of the pandemic, lawmakers have been working to protect the privacy of individuals who experience homelessness in Florida in 2022. If they turn to a homeless shelter for help - whether it's one night or more long term - their personal, identifiable information is kept out of the public record.

Georgia - Homeless Population

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10,234

#12 in the US

HOMELESS HOUSEHOLDShelp

864

#13 in the US

CHRONIC HOMELESSNESShelp

1,374

#17 in the US

HOMELESS YOUNG ADULT POPULATIONhelp

504

#16 in the US

With 10,234 homeless individuals, the Georgia homeless population is significant, which positions the state at number 12. Georgia has tried to curb homelessness by banning local governments from using federal funding to build permanent housing for homeless people and by imposing financial penalties on cities that have a homeless population above a certain rate. They have also attempted to make it a misdemeanor to camp on public property. This legislation did not pass congress, but similar efforts remain persistent.

Hawaii - Homeless Population

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6,458

#21 in the US

HOMELESS HOUSEHOLDShelp

499

#23 in the US

CHRONIC HOMELESSNESShelp

1,678

#14 in the US

HOMELESS YOUNG ADULT POPULATIONhelp

299

#21 in the US

Hawaii has one of the highest homelessness rates per capita in the country and the Hawaii homeless population is 6,458. They have a high level of criminalization for homelessness-related matters such as lying on benches, storing belongings on public property, or obstructing a sidewalk. A new bill in front of congress would criminalize lying or sitting on a public sidewalk within 800 feet of a park or school between 6 am and 9 pm.

Idaho - Homeless Population

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2,315

#38 in the US

HOMELESS HOUSEHOLDShelp

276

#30 in the US

CHRONIC HOMELESSNESShelp

364

#38 in the US

HOMELESS YOUNG ADULT POPULATIONhelp

90

#43 in the US

The Idaho homeless population is below the national mean: 2,315 individuals are homeless, which positions the state at number 38. Yet, the state tried to criminalize camping on public property as a measure to combat nuisance from people facing homelessness. It was struck down in Martin v City of Boise in 2019, in which the court ruled that that would be a violation of the state constitution if there is not enough shelter available. More recently, the state has passed legislation making IDs free for people experiencing homelessness.

Illinois - Homeless Population

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10,431

#11 in the US

HOMELESS HOUSEHOLDShelp

1,063

#9 in the US

CHRONIC HOMELESSNESShelp

2,305

#8 in the US

HOMELESS YOUNG ADULT POPULATIONhelp

671

#10 in the US

The Illinois homeless population is 10,431, the state is ranked 11. Illinois passed a specific Bill of Rights for the homeless back in 2013 - which includes protection from discrimination based on their homeless status and the right to privacy of their belongings in the same manner as in a private residence. In 2021, they passed the Public Housing Access Bill to ensure people with criminal convictions - a group that is at high risk of facing homelessness - had access to public housing.

Indiana - Homeless Population

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5,625

#24 in the US

HOMELESS HOUSEHOLDShelp

482

#24 in the US

CHRONIC HOMELESSNESShelp

403

#35 in the US

HOMELESS YOUNG ADULT POPULATIONhelp

266

#23 in the US

With 5,625 individuals seeking shelter, the Indiana homeless population is relatively above the national mean. The state is ranked 24. Bipartisan efforts led to the passing of House Bill 1095 in Indiana in 2021. The act created a task force that was instructed to set up low-barrier homeless shelters in Indianapolis. These shelters would offer a warm place to stay 24/7, offer opportunities for further employment, and provide areas to receive treatment and the use of other services.

Iowa - Homeless Population

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2,647

#34 in the US

HOMELESS HOUSEHOLDShelp

245

#34 in the US

CHRONIC HOMELESSNESShelp

368

#37 in the US

HOMELESS YOUNG ADULT POPULATIONhelp

141

#38 in the US

The Iowa homeless population is 2,647, which positions the state at number 34. The majority of Iowans who face homelessness and are unsheltered are in the state’s rural areas. There are fewer shelters and it is harder for people to find new housing on short notice if they have been displaced. That is why Iowan legislators are proposing more flexible use of funds to combat homelessness in rural Iowa so everyone has a safe place to spend the night.

Kansas - Homeless Population

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2,449

#35 in the US

HOMELESS HOUSEHOLDShelp

223

#35 in the US

CHRONIC HOMELESSNESShelp

380

#36 in the US

HOMELESS YOUNG ADULT POPULATIONhelp

153

#35 in the US

Ranked 35, the Kansas homeless population is 2,449. Homelessness and lack of affordable housing were long seen as an urban problem in Kansas, but it has spread to rural areas as well. They aim to combat homelessness by making sure more people can get a roof over their heads. In 2022, the governor signed a bill into law that established tax credits to encourage residential housing, especially in rural areas.

Kentucky - Homeless Population

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4,011

#27 in the US

HOMELESS HOUSEHOLDShelp

277

#29 in the US

CHRONIC HOMELESSNESShelp

666

#28 in the US

HOMELESS YOUNG ADULT POPULATIONhelp

221

#28 in the US

4,011 individuals are without homes in the state, which shows that the Kentucky homeless population is quite significant (the state is ranked 27). Kentucky has historically had a “housing first” approach to homelessness - the thought process being that homelessness is the root cause of other issues and solving the lack of a roof over one’s head is the first step to recovering from any subsequent problems. More recently, lawmakers have been attempting to remove other barriers to getting out of homelessness, such as ID accessibility and tax credits.

Louisiana - Homeless Population

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3,173

#31 in the US

HOMELESS HOUSEHOLDShelp

182

#38 in the US

CHRONIC HOMELESSNESShelp

437

#34 in the US

HOMELESS YOUNG ADULT POPULATIONhelp

246

#25 in the US

With one of the lowest homelessness rates in the country (the state is ranked 31), the Louisiana homeless population of 3,173 is below the national mean. Yet, an increasing number of Louisianans are struggling to find affordable housing coming out of the pandemic. The unemployment numbers are going down in the state, but the rents have spiked, leaving some unable to afford housing. The lifting of the eviction moratorium and the impact of hurricane Ida in 2021 have also contributed to the issue.

Maine - Homeless Population

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2,097

#39 in the US

HOMELESS HOUSEHOLDShelp

260

#32 in the US

CHRONIC HOMELESSNESShelp

248

#41 in the US

HOMELESS YOUNG ADULT POPULATIONhelp

139

#39 in the US

With very little salary increase but doubling or tripling the rent prices a few years ago, the Maine homeless population has been on the rise. Currently, 2,097 individuals are homeless which positions the state at number 39. In early 2022, the state enacted a new law requiring police officers to attempt diversion measures instead of arresting a person who is facing homelessness if they are accused of one of five minor crimes - trespassing, disorderly conduct, drug possession, public urination, or public drinking.

Maryland - Homeless Population

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6,360

#22 in the US

HOMELESS HOUSEHOLDShelp

616

#20 in the US

CHRONIC HOMELESSNESShelp

1,397

#16 in the US

HOMELESS YOUNG ADULT POPULATIONhelp

227

#27 in the US

With 6,360 homeless individuals, the Maryland homeless population is significant. The state has had an Interagency Council on Homelessness since 2014 - composed of the Governor’s appointees and State Agency representatives - to consider statewide initiatives and recommend policy solutions to end homelessness in the state. They meet quarterly to discuss the best long-term solutions. Additional funds have been made available to continue to combat homelessness in 2023.

Massachusetts - Homeless Population

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17,975

#6 in the US

HOMELESS HOUSEHOLDShelp

3,714

#3 in the US

CHRONIC HOMELESSNESShelp

2,042

#10 in the US

HOMELESS YOUNG ADULT POPULATIONhelp

481

#19 in the US

The Massachusetts homeless population is one of the highest in the country – 17,975 – ranking the state at number 6. Massachusetts aims to remove barriers that contribute to and exacerbate people’s state of homelessness. In addition to legislation to create more emergency housing for families experiencing homelessness, bills to make it easier for homeless people to acquire an ID – by waiving fees and making people without permanent addresses eligible for state ID – and increasing access to menstrual products in homeless shelters.

Michigan - Homeless Population

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8,638

#16 in the US

HOMELESS HOUSEHOLDShelp

1,026

#10 in the US

CHRONIC HOMELESSNESShelp

1,109

#22 in the US

HOMELESS YOUNG ADULT POPULATIONhelp

484

#18 in the US

Ranked 16, the Michigan homeless population is relatively high: 8,638 individuals are seeking shelter. Michigan introduced its Bill of Rights for the homeless in 2017 and included remedies for when those rights were violated. It prohibits discrimination based on being or being perceived as homeless and ensures a right to privacy similar to in a private home. If people believe their rights under this act are being violated, they can bring a civil suit and be awarded damages.

Minnesota - Homeless Population

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7,940

#17 in the US

HOMELESS HOUSEHOLDShelp

967

#11 in the US

CHRONIC HOMELESSNESShelp

1,787

#11 in the US

HOMELESS YOUNG ADULT POPULATIONhelp

746

#7 in the US

The Minnesota homeless population is 7,940, and the state is ranked 17. Minnesota has recently focused on combating the issue of homelessness amongst its youth, specifically those under 25 that cannot rely on parents or guardians for housing support. Minnesota seeks to do this by providing funding for street, community outreach, and drop-in programs. It also allocates funds for supportive housing as well as transitional living programs.

Mississippi - Homeless Population

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1,107

#46 in the US

HOMELESS HOUSEHOLDShelp

76

#47 in the US

CHRONIC HOMELESSNESShelp

146

#48 in the US

HOMELESS YOUNG ADULT POPULATIONhelp

51

#47 in the US

The state's low cost of living is reflected in the low Mississippi homeless population: 1,107 individuals are homeless, which positions the state at number 46. Until 2018, however, it was also still illegal to be homeless in Mississippi and people could be penalized or incarcerated for the crime of not having a roof over their heads. A bill introduced earlier in 2022 aims to refurbish certain houses in order to create more housing for people experiencing or at risk of homelessness.

Missouri - Homeless Population

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6,527

#20 in the US

HOMELESS HOUSEHOLDShelp

704

#17 in the US

CHRONIC HOMELESSNESShelp

1,090

#23 in the US

HOMELESS YOUNG ADULT POPULATIONhelp

664

#11 in the US

Missouri lawmakers are struggling with the issue of homelessness. Indeed, the Missouri homeless population (6,527 homeless individuals) is relatively significant. A bill has been passed that will go into effect in 2023 which will criminalize sleeping on state-owned land. The bill is being challenged in court, however, saying criminalization will only add to the issues people who experience homelessness are facing.

Montana - Homeless Population

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1,545

#42 in the US

HOMELESS HOUSEHOLDShelp

167

#39 in the US

CHRONIC HOMELESSNESShelp

223

#43 in the US

HOMELESS YOUNG ADULT POPULATIONhelp

79

#44 in the US

With 1,545 people living on the streets, the Montana homeless population is one of the lowest in the country – the state is ranked 42. In Montana, homelessness programs are mostly aimed at specific groups as opposed to people facing homelessness in general. Young people that are pregnant or parenting or people that have substance abuse problems will qualify for specific types of help. Underage children can only stay overnight at a shelter if they are legally emancipated or have permission from a parent or guardian. Efforts to overturn that rule in 2021 failed.

Nebraska - Homeless Population

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2,404

#36 in the US

HOMELESS HOUSEHOLDShelp

202

#37 in the US

CHRONIC HOMELESSNESShelp

463

#32 in the US

HOMELESS YOUNG ADULT POPULATIONhelp

149

#36 in the US

The Nebraska homeless population is below the national mean: 2,404 people are homeless, which positions the state at number 36. Nebraska’s aim to have safe, decent, affordable, and appropriate housing for all is the end goal of its 10-year plan to combat homelessness between 2015 and 2025. They want to end all types of homelessness by creating community-based affordable housing programs as well as continuous forms of necessary care for those experiencing or at risk of becoming homeless.

Nevada - Homeless Population

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6,900

#19 in the US

HOMELESS HOUSEHOLDShelp

159

#41 in the US

CHRONIC HOMELESSNESShelp

1,369

#18 in the US

HOMELESS YOUNG ADULT POPULATIONhelp

570

#13 in the US

Compelled by the increasing Nevada homeless population (6,900), the state’s legislature established the Nevada Interagency Advisory Council on Homelessness in 2019. Assembly Bill 174 created a coordinating body for the many agencies helping people with homelessness or housing issues to create a more coherent and efficient system. They also work on strategic plans to combat housing insecurity and increase awareness of issues related to homelessness.

New Hampshire - Homeless Population

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1,675

#41 in the US

HOMELESS HOUSEHOLDShelp

219

#36 in the US

CHRONIC HOMELESSNESShelp

446

#33 in the US

HOMELESS YOUNG ADULT POPULATIONhelp

65

#46 in the US

Ranked 41, the New Hampshire homeless population of 1,675 is one of the lowest in the United States. New Hampshire announced a new homelessness initiative in the fall of 2021. They said they would use $5 million in federal funding to combat homelessness issues in the state. Part of that money would be spent on creating more beds at shelters across the state in anticipation of higher sheltering costs as well as increased numbers of people facing homelessness.

New Jersey - Homeless Population

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9,662

#14 in the US

HOMELESS HOUSEHOLDShelp

1,081

#8 in the US

CHRONIC HOMELESSNESShelp

1,743

#13 in the US

HOMELESS YOUNG ADULT POPULATIONhelp

514

#15 in the US

Densely populated, the New Jersey homeless population is also high: 9,662 individuals are seeking shelter, which positions the state at number 14. New Jersey’s economy was heavily impacted by the measures implemented to curb the spread of Covid-19 during the pandemic. This has led to a steep rise in people unable to afford their housing. To prevent homelessness rates from going through the roof, a bill was introduced that would revise the previous “Homelessness Prevention Program” and allocate $300 million to homelessness prevention efforts.

New Mexico - Homeless Population

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3,333

#30 in the US

HOMELESS HOUSEHOLDShelp

294

#26 in the US

CHRONIC HOMELESSNESShelp

1,534

#15 in the US

HOMELESS YOUNG ADULT POPULATIONhelp

215

#29 in the US

With 3,333 homeless individuals, New Mexico is ranked 30 out of the 50 states. In fact. The New Mexico homeless population is relatively low. The state takes a holistic approach to homelessness, addressing both housing itself as well as other services such as employment help and applying for government benefits. In 2022, their government made $10 million available to combat homelessness. Tribal governments, counties, or municipalities are eligible for funding if they have feasible plans that can be shown to make a significant impact in their territory.

New York - Homeless Population

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91,271

#2 in the US

HOMELESS HOUSEHOLDShelp

15,151

#1 in the US

CHRONIC HOMELESSNESShelp

7,515

#2 in the US

HOMELESS YOUNG ADULT POPULATIONhelp

3,072

#2 in the US

As the state with one of the highest costs of living in the US, it is no surprise that the New York homeless population: 91,271 individuals are homeless, which puts the state in second place. There have been many efforts over the years to help with the problem, both at the state as well as at city levels. At the end of 2021, a bill was signed to make housing vouchers available and prevent evictions for eligible families.

North Carolina - Homeless Population

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9,280

#15 in the US

HOMELESS HOUSEHOLDShelp

809

#16 in the US

CHRONIC HOMELESSNESShelp

1,272

#19 in the US

HOMELESS YOUNG ADULT POPULATIONhelp

485

#17 in the US

While the North Carolina homeless population is quite significant (9,280 individuals are homeless and the state is ranked 15), North Carolina sees its rapid rehousing program as one of its best practices. It is a housing-first approach that helps people with short-term assistance to stay on their feet. Financial assistance is available to cover necessary costs such as utility deposits, moving costs, or application fees. It can also include up to 24 months of rental assistance. Other services include legal assistance, money management, and mediation.

North Dakota - Homeless Population

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541

#50 in the US

HOMELESS HOUSEHOLDShelp

54

#49 in the US

CHRONIC HOMELESSNESShelp

92

#49 in the US

HOMELESS YOUNG ADULT POPULATIONhelp

35

#49 in the US

The North Dakota homeless population (541 homeless) is the lowest in the country, which positions the state at number 50. North Dakota’s 10-year plan to end long-term homelessness ended in 2018. It quickly became apparent that besides housing, other services were just as crucial at ending and preventing short and long-term homelessness. The report on the 10-year plan included recommendations for moving forward, such as creating permanent supportive housing, improving the ability to pay rent, and further expanding supportive services.

Ohio - Homeless Population

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10,655

#10 in the US

HOMELESS HOUSEHOLDShelp

906

#12 in the US

CHRONIC HOMELESSNESShelp

753

#26 in the US

HOMELESS YOUNG ADULT POPULATIONhelp

736

#8 in the US

Ohio faces a shortage of affordable homes, which increases the Ohio homeless population. Recently, 10,655 individuals were living on the streets, which positions the state at number 10. A bill was recently introduced to award more tax credits to firms building affordable housing or rehabilitating existing buildings into shelters for low-income families. Earlier in 2022, another bill was introduced to combat homelessness amongst veterans, but it was quickly withdrawn by its sponsor saying more research into the extent of the issue was needed.

Oklahoma - Homeless Population

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3,932

#28 in the US

HOMELESS HOUSEHOLDShelp

255

#33 in the US

CHRONIC HOMELESSNESShelp

1,128

#21 in the US

HOMELESS YOUNG ADULT POPULATIONhelp

290

#22 in the US

With 3,932 homeless individuals, the Oklahoma homeless population is above the national mean. The state is ranked 28. Oklahoma is looking to regulate its homeless camps more rigorously. One bill that passed the committee earlier this year would make it mandatory for homeless camps to apply for permits in order to make use of the public space to prevent them from becoming health and safety hazards. This includes thought-out plans for drinking water, sewage, and other waste.

Oregon - Homeless Population

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14,655

#7 in the US

HOMELESS HOUSEHOLDShelp

825

#14 in the US

CHRONIC HOMELESSNESShelp

4,339

#5 in the US

HOMELESS YOUNG ADULT POPULATIONhelp

1,314

#6 in the US

Oregon is facing a housing crisis that is only contributing to the increase in the Oregon homeless population: 14,655 people are without a home, which positions the state at number 7. Yet homeless people are also seen as causing a nuisance for other Oregonians - which is why some of them were previously being penalized for public camping. However, a new law in 2021 called for regulation of the time, place, and manner that public camping can be policed.

Pennsylvania - Homeless Population

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13,375

#8 in the US

HOMELESS HOUSEHOLDShelp

1,550

#7 in the US

CHRONIC HOMELESSNESShelp

1,772

#12 in the US

HOMELESS YOUNG ADULT POPULATIONhelp

716

#9 in the US

Ranked 8, the Pennsylvania homeless population of 13,375 is one of the highest in the country. The state’s main cause of homelessness is the lack of affordable housing. That is why legislation has been introduced to create more affordable homes, for example by converting blighted properties into low-income housing. It is known, however, that homelessness can also lead to other issues. At the start of 2022, a bill was passed to ensure youth experiencing homelessness can graduate from school.

Rhode Island - Homeless Population

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1,104

#47 in the US

HOMELESS HOUSEHOLDShelp

121

#44 in the US

CHRONIC HOMELESSNESShelp

226

#42 in the US

HOMELESS YOUNG ADULT POPULATIONhelp

23

#50 in the US

The Rhode Island homeless population is one of the lowest in the United States: 1,104 individuals are living on the streets, and the state is ranked 47. Rhode Island was the first state to pass a homeless bill of rights in 2012 which prohibits discrimination on housing status. That does not mean homelessness does not still exist in Rhode Island. It has actually significantly gone up over the last few years and there are currently not enough shelter beds for all homeless people.

South Carolina - Homeless Population

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4,287

#26 in the US

HOMELESS HOUSEHOLDShelp

279

#28 in the US

CHRONIC HOMELESSNESShelp

864

#24 in the US

HOMELESS YOUNG ADULT POPULATIONhelp

202

#30 in the US

Ranked 26, the South Carolina homeless population of 4,287 is significant. The state’s capital, Columbia, just deployed a new plan to combat homelessness in the city. They have opened a campus with small individual shelters that resemble tiny homes which will be open 365 days a year. They will target a group of chronically homeless people and will give them access to food and water, sanitation, and mental health services as a first step into getting out of homelessness.

South Dakota - Homeless Population

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1,058

#48 in the US

HOMELESS HOUSEHOLDShelp

93

#46 in the US

CHRONIC HOMELESSNESShelp

162

#47 in the US

HOMELESS YOUNG ADULT POPULATIONhelp

67

#45 in the US

Despite ranking at number 48 and having 1,058 homeless individuals, the South Dakota homeless population has gone up significantly since the start of the pandemic. Their government works to prevent homelessness by ensuring adequate affordable housing is available, especially to people who are facing or at risk of homelessness. They also provide emergency funding and assist in transitional housing.

Tennessee - Homeless Population

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7,256

#18 in the US

HOMELESS HOUSEHOLDShelp

508

#22 in the US

CHRONIC HOMELESSNESShelp

1,153

#20 in the US

HOMELESS YOUNG ADULT POPULATIONhelp

353

#20 in the US

The state has seen a rise in the Tennessee homeless population leading to 7,256 individuals living on the streets. In response, the state has criminalized camping in public parks as a response. Since the law went into effect - without the governor’s signature - in mid-2022, people could be arrested for sleeping on a bench or gathering in public spaces.

Texas - Homeless Population

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27,229

#4 in the US

HOMELESS HOUSEHOLDShelp

1,912

#6 in the US

CHRONIC HOMELESSNESShelp

4,033

#6 in the US

HOMELESS YOUNG ADULT POPULATIONhelp

1,408

#4 in the US

Texas is among the top states when it comes to the Texas homeless population: 27,229 individuals are homeless, which puts the state in fourth place. They have taken the criminalization route, making it illegal to sit, lie down, or camp in public areas and prohibiting solicitation for money or other valuables in certain places during certain times since 2021.

Utah - Homeless Population

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3,131

#32 in the US

HOMELESS HOUSEHOLDShelp

290

#27 in the US

CHRONIC HOMELESSNESShelp

688

#27 in the US

HOMELESS YOUNG ADULT POPULATIONhelp

194

#31 in the US

Ranked 32, the Utah homeless population of 3,131 is below the national mean. The state works to transition people out of homelessness as quickly as possible by providing emergency shelter and rapid rehousing. It also focuses on preventing homelessness for vulnerable groups that are at a high risk of facing homelessness by offering landlord-tenant mediation and transitional housing for youth and survivors of domestic violence.

Vermont - Homeless Population

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1,110

#45 in the US

HOMELESS HOUSEHOLDShelp

124

#43 in the US

CHRONIC HOMELESSNESShelp

185

#44 in the US

HOMELESS YOUNG ADULT POPULATIONhelp

99

#41 in the US

Although the Vermont homeless population is low in comparison to the rest of the nation (1,110 people are homeless) and the state has spent hundreds of millions of dollars on its homelessness initiatives over the last few years, the number of people without a permanent roof over their heads continues to rise - especially during the pandemic. The housing shortage, substance abuse problems, mental health, and domestic violence are all contributing factors to the rise of homelessness that the state aims to combat simultaneously.

Virginia - Homeless Population

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5,957

#23 in the US

HOMELESS HOUSEHOLDShelp

621

#19 in the US

CHRONIC HOMELESSNESShelp

813

#25 in the US

HOMELESS YOUNG ADULT POPULATIONhelp

234

#26 in the US

Ranked 23, the Virginia homeless population is high (5,957 individuals in total), specifically among the youth. However, the youth is not always accounted for in the numbers because they fly under the radar. This is in part due to the fact that previously, anyone underage would have to be accompanied by an adult to enter a homeless shelter. This has changed in 2022, with legislation that allows children over 14 to come in unaccompanied.

Washington - Homeless Population

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22,923

#5 in the US

HOMELESS HOUSEHOLDShelp

2,116

#5 in the US

CHRONIC HOMELESSNESShelp

6,756

#3 in the US

HOMELESS YOUNG ADULT POPULATIONhelp

1,777

#3 in the US

Ranked 5th, the Washington homeless population is one of the highest in the country: 22,923 people are living on the streets. The state deals with the inconvenience of many homeless encampments being “in the public right of way”, such as along sidewalks, below overpasses, and along highways. Their legislature is considering a bill - backed by the governor - to create a new office dedicated to helping people who live in those encampments transition out of homelessness.

West Virginia - Homeless Population

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1,341

#43 in the US

HOMELESS HOUSEHOLDShelp

58

#48 in the US

CHRONIC HOMELESSNESShelp

174

#46 in the US

HOMELESS YOUNG ADULT POPULATIONhelp

112

#40 in the US

With 1,341 individuals without a home, the West Virginia homeless population is relatively low in comparison to the rest of the country (the state is ranked 43). West Virginia has uttered the ambition of wanting to end homelessness once and for all, but they have not been able to achieve their goal. Most recently, there have been discussions to limit the number of places where homeless shelters can legally be located - prohibiting them from being within 1000 feet of schools or daycares.

Wisconsin - Homeless Population

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4,515

#25 in the US

HOMELESS HOUSEHOLDShelp

558

#21 in the US

CHRONIC HOMELESSNESShelp

611

#29 in the US

HOMELESS YOUNG ADULT POPULATIONhelp

193

#32 in the US

The Wisconsin homeless population is above the national mean: 4,515 individuals are without shelter, which positions the state at number 25. Wisconsin introduced an Interagency Council on Homelessness in 2017 that has been working on plans to end homelessness in the state since. They work from the principle that housing is a human right; any future instances of homelessness should be rare, brief, and nonrecurring; housing is a stepping stone to better outcomes throughout all of society and lack of sufficient affordable housing is the greatest cause of homelessness.

Wyoming - Homeless Population

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612

#49 in the US

HOMELESS HOUSEHOLDShelp

50

#50 in the US

CHRONIC HOMELESSNESShelp

81

#50 in the US

HOMELESS YOUNG ADULT POPULATIONhelp

91

#42 in the US

The Wyoming homeless population is one of the lowest in the country: 612 individuals are homeless, and the state is ranked 49. Yet they recognize that experiencing homelessness from a young age can contribute to other issues. That is why in 2017, they passed a law that allowed unaccompanied minors faced with homelessness to be able to obtain their own birth certificates, get a job, buy a car or sign up for college without a parent or legal guardian.