On any given night in Sacramento County, it is estimated that approximately 3,665 experience homelessness. Over one-half of these people are unsheltered. (Source: Sacramento Steps Forward)
Our national data shows that the number of Americans caught in a revolving door between the streets, shelters, and jails may reach the tens of thousands. Roughly 48,000 people entering shelters every year are coming nearly directly from prisons or jails. Of the 11 million people detained or incarcerated in jails every year, as many as 15% report having been homeless. (Source: United States Interagency Council on Homelessness, 2018)
48,000 people in shelters are coming…from prisons or jails. As many as 15% of people in jail report having been homeless.
While homelessness has many causes, some of which have to do with larger economic forces, it is also caused and exacerbated by the policy choices we make in our communities and as a nation. When communities pursue policies that criminalize homelessness, when we severely punish people for minor drug possession or for assault charges related to mental health decompensation, or when we fail to adequately assist people leaving jails or prisons to obtain housing, services, and employment, we contribute to and worsen the problem of homelessness, particularly unsheltered homelessness. (Source: US ICH, 2018)
Success Reentry will soon be providing SOAR Case Managers to assist persons who are homeless and at-risk of homelessness filing applications for SSI/SSDI.
The following is the legal definition of “homeless person” according to the U.S. federal government.
42 U.S.C. § 11302 – General definition of homeless individual
(a) In general
For purposes of this chapter, the terms “homeless”, “homeless individual”, and “homeless person” means—
(1)an individual or family who lacks a fixed, regular, and adequate nighttime residence;
(2)an individual or family with a primary nighttime residence that is a public or private place not designed for or ordinarily used as a regular sleeping accommodation for human beings, including a car, park, abandoned building, bus or train station, airport, or camping ground;
(3)an individual or family living in a supervised publicly or privately operated shelter designated to provide temporary living arrangements (including hotels and motels paid for by Federal, State, or local government programs for low-income individuals or by charitable organizations, congregate shelters, and transitional housing);
(4)an individual who resided in a shelter or place not meant for human habitation and who is exiting an institution where he or she temporarily resided;
(5)an individual or family who—
(A) will imminently lose their housing, including housing they own, rent, or live in without paying rent, are sharing with others, and rooms in hotels or motels not paid for by Federal, State, or local government programs for low-income individuals or by charitable organizations, as evidenced by—
(i)a court order resulting from an eviction action that notifies the individual or family that they must leave within 14 days;
(ii)the individual or family having a primary nighttime residence that is a room in a hotel or motel and where they lack the resources necessary to reside there for more than 14 days; or
(iii)credible evidence indicating that the owner or renter of the housing will not allow the individual or family to stay for more than 14 days, and any oral statement from an individual or family seeking homeless assistance that is found to be credible shall be considered credible evidence for purposes of this clause;
(B)has no subsequent residence identified; and
(C)lacks the resources or support networks needed to obtain other permanent housing; and
(6)unaccompanied youth and homeless families with children and youth defined as homeless under other Federal statutes who—
(A)have experienced a long term period without living independently in permanent housing,
(B)have experienced persistent instability as measured by frequent moves over such period, and
(C)can be expected to continue in such status for an extended period of time because of chronic disabilities, chronic physical health or mental health conditions, substance addiction, histories of domestic violence or childhood abuse, the presence of a child or youth with a disability, or multiple barriers to employment.
(b) Domestic violence and other dangerous or life-threatening conditions
Notwithstanding any other provision of this section, the Secretary shall consider to be homeless any individual or family who is fleeing, or is attempting to flee, domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault, stalking, or other dangerous or life-threatening conditions in the individual’s or family’s current housing situation, including where the health and safety of children are jeopardized, and who have no other residence and lack the resources or support networks to obtain other permanent housing.
(c) Income eligibility
(1) In general
A homeless individual shall be eligible for assistance under any program provided by this chapter, only if the individual complies with the income eligibility requirements otherwise applicable to such program.
Notwithstanding paragraph (1), a homeless individual shall be eligible for assistance under title I of the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act [29 U.S.C. 3111 et seq.].
For purposes of this chapter, the term “homeless” or “homeless individual” does not include any individual imprisoned or otherwise detained pursuant to an Act of the Congress or a State law.
(e) Persons experiencing homelessness
Any references in this chapter to homeless individuals (including homeless persons) or homeless groups (including homeless persons) shall be considered to include, and to refer to, individuals experiencing homelessness or groups experiencing homelessness, respectively.