In January, we partnered with several nonprofits to conduct the annual Point-in-Time Count of individuals experiencing homelessness throughout the county. The results are in and this year there's a three percent decrease of individuals identified as experiencing homelessness and notable improvements in several areas.
Why did the overall number go down?
The largest contributing factor is that the number of single adults experiencing homelessness decreased by 15 percent (111 people) between the 2021 and 2022 counts due to an increase in rapid rehousing resources (+40 percent, 204 beds) available through the federal CARES Act.
“In spite of the health crisis and economic challenges which have weighed the heaviest upon our most vulnerable residents, we are pleased to observe meaningful progress in our fight to prevent and end homelessness,” said Tom Barnett, deputy director of the Office to Prevent and End Homelessness. “This achievement would not have been possible without the dedicated support and tenacious spirit of our community of partners. There is still plenty of work ahead, and we welcome and encourage the continued contributions of all who wish to take part in the effort to ensure that everyone has access to housing in our Fairfax County community.”
- 1,191 people experiencing homelessness in Fairfax County – a decrease of three percent (31 individuals)
- The number of single adults experiencing homelessness decreased by 15 percent (111 people)
- The number of unsheltered individuals (57 in 2022) has declined 34 percent since 2018
- Results showed decreases in the number of adults experiencing chronic homelessness (-14 percent, 45 individuals) and veterans experiencing homelessness (-33 percent, 16 individuals)
- Results indicated increases in the number of individuals fleeing domestic violence (+19 percent, 18 individuals) and individuals experiencing homelessness reporting a history of domestic violence (+20 percent, 37 individuals)
- The most significant disparity in the demographics of those experiencing homelessness on the night of the 2022 Point-in-Time Count is the disproportionate representation of people identifying as Black or African American. Although only 10 percent of the general population in Fairfax County identifies as Black or African American, 50 percent of the people experiencing homelessness on the night of the 2022 Point-in-Time Count identified as Black or African American. This imbalance has not improved over time.
Programs/Shelters for Individuals Experiencing Homelessness
Fairfax County is home to 11 emergency shelters, which are operated by nonprofit organizations year-round with seasonal and other limited overflow capacity. There also are five transitional housing programs serving special populations, including victims of domestic violence and transition-aged youth ages 18 to 24. In addition to providing shelter assistance, the Fairfax-Falls Church Community Partnership to Prevent and End Homelessness provides a variety of homeless service interventions to achieve the goal of ensuring homelessness is brief, rare and one time.
About the Annual Count
The annual Point-in-Time Count includes individuals in emergency shelters and transitional housing as well as individuals experiencing unsheltered homelessness. The annual count is required by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development to help policymakers and program administrators track progress toward the goal of ending homelessness. At the local level, the count identifies strengths and gaps in the homeless services system.