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What we can learn from U.S. cities where homelessness is trending downward

Towns making progress, an overwhelmed system, affordable housing — here’s what to expect ahead of new federal data on homelessness.
"What the data tells us over and over again is that homelessness rates are driven primarily by the housing market," said Ann Oliva, CEO of the National Alliance to End Homelessness.
Mario Tama/Getty Images

Mental illness plays a complicated role in the homelessness crisis

May 30, 2023
Though the affordable housing shortage is key, mental illness increases the risk of losing a home and makes it harder to regain one.
Being unhoused often limits access to treatment for people with mental illnesses.
Frederic J. Brown/AFP via Getty Images

Biden plan to end homelessness is missing a crucial ingredient: more money

May 30, 2023
Getting an unhoused person into a home can cost $10,000 a year — and more than 580,000 people are unhoused on any given night.
Unhoused people are cleared from a park encampment two blocks from the White House in February.
Brendan Smialowski/AFP via Getty Images

She left California for Arizona, but found high rent and lower wages

Dec 5, 2022
Taylor Jenkins learned the hard way that the Phoenix area had become a top destination for those leaving expensive coastal cities.
Taylor Jenkins moved to Arizona from the San Francisco Bay Area in search of more affordable housing, but she struggled to find it there. Above, Jenkins in Arizona.
Courtesy Taylor Jenkins

Remote workers have stayed in Truckee, California, but not the local workforce

Aug 16, 2022
Skyrocketing housing costs are driving out the local labor force, leaving all kinds of businesses in the small town short-staffed.
Truckee, California, became a haven for remote workers early in the pandemic.
Matt Gush/Getty Images

As homelessness rises, some states make it illegal to sleep outside 

Aug 11, 2022
In Missouri, it’s now illegal. In Tennessee, it can be a felony. But criminalizing homelessness could make it harder for people to find homes.
Inflation and high rent prices in New York City are contributing the city's ongoing homelessness crisis.
Spencer Platt/Getty Images