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HUD says less homeless in La., but some disagree

2 years 2 months 1 week ago November 04, 2014 Nov 4, 2014 Tuesday, November 04 2014 November 04, 2014 5:08 PM in News
Source: WBRZ
By: Jessica LeBlanc

BATON ROUGE - According to U.S. Housing and Urban Development the number of homeless people in Louisiana has dramatically decreased.

A recent study done by the government, said homelessness in the state has gone down more than 50 percent since 2010. The study also said that currently there are 4,606 homeless people living in the state, this year.

But local homeless shelter leaders said they're not seeing what the government's reporting.

"So the reflections off of this year's point and time survey kind of shows a decrease in homelessness. I don't think overall that's what we're seeing," said Michael Acaldo, the President and Ceo of St. Vincent de Paul.

Acaldo explained that the numbers move around a lot.

"Homelessness kind of goes up and down. And certainly from what I've seen over the last several years, there's an increased number of homeless individuals in the community."

Acaldo said the reason he thinks the discrepancy in the numbers exist is because of the time of year the survey was taken and the amount of people who participated.

"It was when we had all the ice, and most people were staying home. So volunteers, at various social service agencies like St. Vincent de Paul {and} Capital Area Alliance for the homeless...it was more difficult {for them} to get out and kind of do the point and time census."

According to HUD, 578,000 homeless people are living in the United States. That number has gone down by 2 percent in one year.

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