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'Point in time' homeless count to give new snapshot of those at risk

8:47 AM, Jan 30, 2013   |    comments
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KUSA - The people who help meet the needs of metro Denver's homeless population are going to be getting some new guidance, thanks to what's known as a point in time survey.

The survey is a grassroots count of how many people are living on the streets in seven different counties. The count, which was carried out earlier this week, involved visits to food banks, plasma centers, motels on Colfax Avenue, churches, homeless service centers, parks and greenbelts.

Gary Sanford, executive director of the Metropolitan Denver Homeless Initiative (MDHI), which conducts the annual survey, was our guest on 9NEWS 7 a.m.

Sanford hopes the survey may lead to changes in the amount of affordable housing that's available in metro Denver, especially for veterans and the chronically homeless. The results from this week's survey won't be known for a while, but Sanford is hopeful they'll show a decrease.

During the last point in time survey, MDHI researchers discovered the number of homeless veterans increased slightly from 2011 to 2012, to 12.9 percent from 11.7 percent, or 12,605 people. In that same time period, the number of people sleeping on the streets more than doubled, to nearly 1,000, up from 411 in 2011.

(KUSA-TV © 2013 Multimedia Holdings Corporation)

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