As we honor veterans today, it is important to remember that nearly 4,000 of our neighbors experiencing homelessness fought for our country.
Seventy-five percent of veterans experiencing homelessness are unsheltered with their health and wellbeing further at risk. This is even more troubling as many veterans experiencing homelessness are seniors and especially vulnerable to the coronavirus.
Combating homelessness among veterans is a long time priority of United Way of Greater Los Angeles. In 2014, Michelle Obama joined the United for Veterans Summit that activated the community and called on local leaders to create solutions for our veterans experiencing unemployment and homelessness. We have partners who continue to carry out this work today.
Over the past decade, robust investments at the local, state, and federal level positively impacted veteran homelessness overall. Los Angeles sees the result of investments in the 60 percent decrease in homelessness among veterans in Los Angeles since 2009. In 2020, the number of veterans living in our streets rose only 0.6 percent, while there was a 12.7 percent increase in the number of people experiencing homelessness in the county overall.
While this progress is admirable, there are still too many people who have served our country suffering in our streets. Each week outreach workers connect with veterans experiencing homelessness, and these frontline leaders need our support to help more of our unhoused neighbors find their way home. United Way knows that people come inside when they are offered safe and dignified spaces.
This Saturday HomeWalk At Home is an opportunity for every Angeleno to be part of the solution to help us provide safety and services to more of our neighbors experiencing homelessness.
We need Everyone In on Nov 14th for #HomeWalkAtHome to help us end homelessness for veterans.