Shocker, not: New homeless count in King County shows spike in number of people sleeping outside

king county homeless2

Homeless in Seattle…

You know what that means: The local governments are going to need more taxpayer dollars!

From Spokesman Review: For the first time, King County’s annual one-night count of homelessness found more than half of homeless people were sleeping outside versus in shelter, with a stark increase in the number of vehicle campers.

With pressure to show progress on the homelessness crisis, the county on Thursday announced an overall 4 percent increase in the annual snapshot count of homeless people, to 12,112.

The count, conducted in January, found a worsening problem of people living in tent camps, cars, RVs and the street compared to last year. More than 70 percent of the county’s unsheltered homeless people were in Seattle.

The Seattle TimesProject Homeless is funded by The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Campion Foundation, the Paul G. Allen Family Foundation, Raikes Foundation, Schultz Family Foundation, Seattle Foundation, Seattle Mariners, and Starbucks. The Seattle Times maintains editorial control over Project Homeless content.· Find out more about Project Homeless.

As Seattle and the county’s declared state of emergency on homelessness enters a THIRD year, the one-night numbers are sure to roil an already heated debate about how to better respond.

Compared to more rapid rises in homeless counts over the past five years, a slower 4 percent increase represents progress, said Kyra Zylstra, interim director of All Home, the county’s homelessness coordinating agency, which organizes the yearly count.

“It’s not the kind of progress we all want to see,” Zylstra said. “But our performance data shows that the resources that we are investing in are housing people faster.”

The increase in people living outside includes 370 residents of Seattle’s six sanctioned tent camps. They are counted as “unsheltered” because federal guidelines do not recognize sanctioned tent camps as shelter.

The new homelessness figure points to some gains, including significant drops in the numbers of homeless veterans and families. Zylstra credited rapid rehousing, which provides rental assistance, with helping more people find stable housing.

Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan said the results point toward a need for greater regional collaboration.

“We must continue to take urgent action on the homelessness crisis with holistic, regional solutions,” she said in a released statement,” Durkan said. “The reduction in veterans who are experiencing homelessness shows we can have an impact with focused strategies. But there is much work to be done”

Overall, about two-thirds of homeless people in the county are men, and more than three-quarters lived in households without children. There were also signs of homelessness worsening outside of Seattle, with increases in people living outside in north and east King County.

The results come at a critical time. Seattle’s new business head tax, which will charge large businesses $275 per worker to fund homeless services and affordable housing, spotlighted a struggle to find the right balance between long- and short-term strategies. The business community has organized an effort to repeal it.

In the midst of that debate, a task force on homelessness, called One Table, has had delays in recommending more countywide, comprehensive strategies.

Read the rest of the story here.

See my many other blog posts on Seattle’s homeless crisis:


18 responses to “Shocker, not: New homeless count in King County shows spike in number of people sleeping outside

  1. The reason is simple: Just like San Francisco, Berkeley, and Los Angeles, when a city announces to the whole world its indulgence of the homeless, more will come from across the country.

    Liked by 4 people

    • Dear Dr Eowyn . . . God Bless you for expressing the very thought that I had. Of course, those who do not wish to work will congregate to the very regions where they may have a shot at having a rent free dwelling of any sort. A place where they can shower, toilet facilities inside, etc. I have no doubt that as the weather get warmer, we will see an increase in those who will gather to the Mecca of government who wish to shower the Homeless with the largesse of the people. I am thinking that this new mayor of Seattle is every bit as bad for the average working class people, as the last one was in his ways.

      Liked by 2 people

  2. A 4% increase is a GOOD thing? It “represents progress”? Do I laugh, or do I cry?

    Seattle was literally LOUSY with homeless back in the mid ‘90s: a girl I knew from college came up in “The Green Machine” (some sort of historical hippie-bus that travels from LA to Seattle and back; she landed in a flophouse and ended up with hepatitis and lice, and probably a raging case of gonorrhea. Apparently, Seattle is known far and wide as being “homeless-friendly”; plus, there are lots of Proggies/bleeding hearts who look the other way, hand out change to street kids, lots of street entertainment, and easy access to drugs.

    Ahhh, Shangri-La. 💩

    Liked by 4 people

  3. Hey, the liberals are in charge, I’m sure they’ll come up with a utopian idea. /s

    Liked by 3 people

  4. Not to worry. As soon as the snow begins to fall they’ll be headed South again. Seattle may be “Number One” in the Race to the Bottom. They actually congratulate themselves on the perpetuation of failure.

    Let’s see, what would an idiot government do in a situation like this? I know! Tax the productive to pay for the idle. Soon, only fools will work since all their money will go to indulging the indulgent.

    Liked by 3 people

  5. Left there 15 years ago and never looked back it’s a depressing city. People are rude. Too much traffic.

    Liked by 2 people

  6. Gosh at this rate the home owners there will have to take out loans to pay for their property taxes. Is there any end the ones who work and pay there way are the ones who are going to suffer no justice in this at all.

    Liked by 3 people

    • The ones who work are also the ones who vote, DEMORAT, ALL THE TIME. It’s hard for me to muster any sympathy for them. They knew EXACTLY what they’d get with Jenny Durkan (or if they didn’t they are STUPID).

      The mayor doesn’t care what the citizens want, she didn’t even show up to the last meeting about a new homeless encampment (that will, of course, allow drug use): “Seattle ‘community engagement’ meeting felt more like a sales pitch. Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan proudly declared the importance of listening to the community as she implements her new plan to tackle homelessness in Seattle. But she wasn’t at the South Lake Union meeting to discuss a tiny home village.”

      Liked by 3 people

  7. Betcha’ none of those “census workers” will be out at night counting folks in these neighborhoods. They never do. The census is bogus, but it is a handy tool for redistribution of wealth to mismanaged cities.

    Liked by 2 people

  8. Pingback: News and Headlines. 6/1/2018 – News and Headlines: RoboeAmerican, informing the people.

  9. YOLO (You Only Live Once) also means (You Only Live Outside)

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Anyone else notice that the homeless issue only arose after the closing of Federal and State ran psychiatric hospitals? Before then these people were referred to as derelicts and bums, usually thrown into drunk tanks or shuttled back to those facilties to keep them off the streets. Here came the crusaders so concerned about their ‘rights’ but with no plan to aid them except a hands off approach. The facilities went dark and homeless camps sprouted like weeds. The mantra shifted to we must care for the lowly and unfortunate among us so they shifted into organizations ineffective and more costly than the government ran hospitals and homes. Leftists do not solve problems, they compound them with an askewed view of compassion that is nothing more than a disguised hatred for the real thing.

    Liked by 2 people

  11. If you pay people because they are poor, you’ll just end up with a lot of poor people. Take away the dis-incentive to support one’s self and let nature take its course.

    Liked by 2 people

  12. Thy should be hanging out at Starbucks.

    Liked by 2 people

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