Each year, Allegheny County participates in a federally required national effort to count the number of people experiencing homelessness on a single night in January. Allegheny County also performs a supplemental count in the summer. The Point-in-Time (PIT) homeless count enumerates the sheltered (residing in emergency homeless shelters or transitional housing programs) and unsheltered (residing in places not meant for human habitation) homeless population within the County.
What are the key takeaways from the 2023 count?
- On January 24, 2023, 913 individuals were staying in emergency shelters or experiencing unsheltered homelessness (compared to 736 in 2022).
- 758 were staying in emergency shelters (83% of overall count)
- 155 were unsheltered (17% of overall count)
- An increase in the number of individuals staying in emergency shelter (+127) is largely responsible for the increase between 2022 and 2023 Point-in-Time counts. The County’s emergency shelter bed capacity expanded in November 2022 with the opening of Second Avenue Commons.
- The number of individuals experiencing unsheltered homelessness also increased (+50).
- Among those 913 individuals staying in emergency shelters or experiencing unsheltered homelessness
- The majority were part of adult-only households (676, 74%)
- 52 (6%) were transition age (18-24) youth, an increase of 10 individuals from last year
- 155 (17%) were children (under age 18); no children were unsheltered
- 548 (60%) identified as male, 358 (39%) identified as female, 7 (1%) identified as transgender or a gender that is not singularly ‘female’ or ‘male’
- 432 (47%) identified as Black/African American/African, 387 (42%) as White, and 75 (8%) as multiracial; those identifying as American Indian, Alaska Native, or Indigenous or Asian or Asian American each accounted for about 1%of the count
- The number and percent of White individuals notably increased (+128, +7 percentage points) from last year’s count. Despite the increase, White individuals are still underrepresented, as they make up 79% of the County’s population.
- Fifty-one individuals identified as Hispanic/Latin(a)(o)(x), an increase of 23 people from last year, though their representation within the Point-in-Time count grew just slightly (4% to 6%).
- 36 were veterans (4%)
- 136 (of those using emergency shelter only) were adult survivors of domestic violence (18% of those in emergency shelter; surveyors did not ask unsheltered individuals this question)
- 208 were chronically homeless (23%)
How are these reports used?
The data collected during the yearly PIT is submitted to HUD, to create a yearly homelessness assessment report presented to congress. For more information, visit the HUD website on the Point-in-Time Count, linked here.
Allegheny County uses the yearly data as a component of its work to understand trends and needs, informing the County’s strategies to reduce homelessness and better serve those experiencing it.