Two out of 10 homeless people in Metro Vancouver have jobs

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      Being employed is no guarantee against ending up on the street.

      A final report on the 2017 count made on behalf of the Metro Vancouver regional district shows that two out of 10 homeless people have indicated that they have jobs.

      According to the report released Tuesday (September 26), a total of 346 homeless people told organizers and volunteers during the 24‐hour count between March 7 and 8, 2017 that they are employed part-time.

      In addition, 122 homeless people denoted that they have full-time jobs.

      A total of 2,209 respondents answered questions about their sources of income, and 468 of these are employed either part-time or full-time.

      This means that people who are working account for 21 percent of homeless people in the Lower Mainland.

      A total of 3,605 people were found to be homeless during the count. Out of this total, the source of incomes is not clear in the case of 1,396 people.

      The report also shows that the number of working people who do not have a home has been increasing.

      The regional homeless count happens every three years, and in 2008, 421 out of the 2,291 homeless people with known income sources reported that they are employed.

      In the 2011 count, 240 out of the 1,513 homeless people with known income sources indicated that they have jobs.

      According to the final report on the 2017 count, homeless people cited three common reasons for their situation: high cost of rent, lack of income, and not enough supply of suitable housing.

      The count showed that Vancouver has the most number of homeless people, numbering 2,138.

      Vancouver Mayor Gregor Robertson vowed in his first election campaign in 2008 to end homelessness in the city.

      “Region-wide, 828 more people were identified as homeless in 2017 compared to 2014, representing a 30% increase in homelessness and the highest number since 2002 when the first Metro wide count occurred,” according to the report. “Homelessness increased in all communities, except on the North Shore, between 19% (Burnaby) and 142% (Delta/White Rock). The highest absolute increases occurred in Vancouver (335), Surrey (199) and Langley (114).”