Utah homeless up slightly from 2016, but down since 2010

Francisco Kjolseth | The Salt Lake Tribune Evidence of homelessness in downtown Salt Lake City is clear. The state is releasing new year-to-year data that indicates an increase in homelessness, as much as 17 percent among families. This comes as the Legislature and other political leaders are making serious attempts to address the issue and in the recent lawmaking session, approved $9.25 million to begin developing a new network of smaller shelters and coordinated services.

Salt Lake City • Federal housing officials say Utah's homeless population increased slightly last year but the number of veterans and families with children experiencing homelessness continues a seven-year decline.

The Department of Housing and Urban Development announced the results Wednesday of its annual count of the homeless on a single night last January.

It says more than 2,800 homeless were counted in Utah communities. That's an increase of 1.6 percent from 2016, but about a 13 percent decrease since 2010.

Families with children experiencing homelessness dropped about 1 percent from last year and more than 28 percent since 2010.

The 220 U.S. veterans who were homeless in Utah was about a third fewer than January 2016 — down 36 percent from 2010.

About 2,500 homeless persons were counted in emergency shelters or transitional housing on the January night while 278 were unsheltered.

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