Homelessness Rates Are Down Across Nebraska and U.S.

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June 5, 2019 - 3:27pm

Local and federal experts are seeing a positive trend with combating homelessness across the country and in Nebraska.


Since 2010, rates of homelessness across the country have taken a 13% drop, according to the U.S. Interagency Council on Homelessness. But in Nebraska, the rates have fallen 38%. The Lincoln Homeless Coalition said improved collaboration and communication have helped the rates fall in Nebraska.

Executive director of the U.S. Interagency Council on Homelessness, Matthew Doherty, said Nebraska has made steady progress reducing homelessness with single adults, families and people with disabilities.

“(Nebraska has) been making steady progress," Doherty said. "Sometimes keeping up with the national progress; sometimes actually helping lead the national progress.”

When speaking to the Nebraska-Iowa Homelessness Symposium in Lincoln Wednesday, Doherty noted parts of Nebraska, including Lincoln, have “effectively ended” veteran homelessness. However, there is a long way to go. Doherty said it’s going to take entire communities and a focus on affordable housing.

“Housing first and the evidence behind it tells us that housing is what allows people to solve their problems," Doherty said. "And that we need to get people to housing first, with the right services, so they can use that housing as their platform for addressing their challenges and pursuing their goals.”

Doherty said everyone’s situation is different and combating homelessness should be specifically tailored.

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