This announcement was covered by the Tulsa World on April 13, 2018. Read the story >
The Community Service Council (CSC) is committed to increasing its use of available local and state data to better understand the scope and scale of homelessness and inform the need for new resources and/or reallocation of existing resources. The newly released Homelessness in Tulsa Annual Report produced by CSC seeks to identify some contributing factors to the state of homelessness and to spotlight subpopulations needing further evaluation and attention.
The report highlights two sets of data collected over the past year. The Single-Night Homeless Count released by CSC each year, also known as the annual Point -In-Time (PIT) count, and The one-year Homeless Management Information System (HMIS) estimates which provide unduplicated counts of homeless people who use an emergency shelter or transitional housing program at any time from October through September.
The Single-Night Homeless Count, conducted on Jan. 25, 2018, offers a snapshot of homelessness in Tulsa—of both sheltered and unsheltered homeless populations—on a single night. One night counts are conducted across the nation during the same week in January using the same Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) standards. Communities across the nation typically conduct their PIT counts during a defined period of time (e.g., dusk to dawn) on a given night to minimize the risk of counting any person more than once. On the evening of Jan. 25 in Tulsa, CSC’s A Way Home for Tulsa (AWH4T) staff and partners, along with several other other local organizations and volunteers, conducted the survey of homeless and formerly homeless individuals which provided the counts of homelessness and the estimate of the number of people experiencing homelessness within particular populations, such as people with chronic patterns of homelessness and veterans.
From this single-night data collected in January 2018, CSC’s Housing & Homelessness division team combined it with data collected over the last year through Tulsa’s Homeless Management Information System to produce the first comprehensive annual report dedicated entirely to homelessness in Tulsa, detailing who and where the homeless population in this community are, and the reason why so many Tulsans find themselves homeless.
The purpose of this report is not to provide the strategies or solutions to ending homelessness, but to provide a picture of the current state of Tulsa’s homelessness and to be the catalyst to integrate other community initiatives to collectively improve outcomes for the housing and health of the community.
According to CSC’s Housing & Homelessness division director Patrice Pratt, “It’s not enough to set a housing target, reach it and call it a day. Solving the issue of homelessness is a process, not an endpoint. Homelessness is a multi-layer issue. That’s what makes it so hard to solve. Even as we house people, other people become homeless.”
This is why CSC hopes the report will be used as a tool to understanding those many layers of homelessness in a format that is reader-friendly and easy to understand, yet thorough in its data reporting and analysis.