UNITED STATES NEWS

How effective is California’s homelessness programs? State hasn’t been tracking

Apr 9, 2024, 10:36 AM

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — California spent $24 billion to tackle homelessness over a five year period but didn’t consistently track the outcomes or effectiveness of its programs, according to state audit released Tuesday.

The report attempts to assess how effective the state and local cities have been spending billions of dollars to address the ongoing homelessness crisis in California.

An estimated 171,000 people are homeless in California, which would amount to roughly 30% of all of the homeless people in the U.S. Despite the billions in spending, the problem is not improving in many cities.

Among other things, the report found that the California Interagency Council on Homelessness, which is responsible for coordinating agencies and allocating resources for homelessness programs, stopped tracking data related to five initiatives in 2021, despite the continuous funding from the state. It also failed to develop a collect and evaluate outcome data of these programs due to the lack of a consistent method.

The report notes that some data regarding the number of program participants and bed inventory in the state system might not be accurate or reliable.

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How effective is California’s homelessness programs? State hasn’t been tracking