Housing Programs That Work
Despite what people may think and what they read and hear in the press, we’ve actually had a huge reduction in homelessness in Clackamas County over the last year. And we have the data to prove it.
According to the most recent point in time count, the number of people defined as homeless in the county dropped from 597 the same time in 2022 to 410. That’s a reduction of over 30 percent. Persons defined as unsheltered went from 327 to 178, almost half.
To help the county board of commissioners get a better sense of the needs out there, a housing inventory was also conducted.
The assessor’s office has counted over 142,000 dwelling units in Clackamas County. That includes houses, duplexes, triplexes and mobile homes, but not apartments. But a housing needs assessment conducted in 2017 by EcoNorthwest showed a total of 163,650 units.
Out of all those dwelling units, the county owns, subsidizes or provides vouchers for nearly 7300. The various programs help over 7800 low-income and high-needs residents get into apartments, hotel and motel rooms and assists them with making rent payments.
Overall, the county has over 4600 regulated affordable housing units. The Housing Authority of Clackamas County provides over 1800 housing vouchers and there are nearly 500 Regional Long-Term Rental Assistance Supported Housing Services vouchers issued to county residents.
There are almost 50 emergency shelter beds for adults only, over 60 for adults with children and over 25 for youth. Another 44 residents are served through transitional housing programs, 37 through joint transitional and rapid rehousing programs and another 161 through rapid rehousing programs.
As leaders, it’s important that we use the best available data to make our decisions. What this data shows is that what we’re doing is working. It also shows that county staff is doing an excellent job of obtaining positive results with existing programs and resources.
It shows that with the right approach, the right locations and with proper public input, you can reduce your homeless population.
What we’re doing is working.