Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority officials and volunteers will conduct the annual 2022 homeless count between Jan. 25-27, the first since 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic that canceled this year’s count.

The effort, known as the point-in-time count or 2020 Greater Los Angeles Homeless Count, is essential to understanding how large the region’s homelessness crisis has become. The count must be conducted by Continuum of Care providers to receive federal funding through the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.

According to the 2020 count, the county’s homeless population increased by 12.7 percent over the previous year, while the city of Los Angeles’ homeless population jumped by 14.2 percent.

In January 2019, Los Angeles County had 58,936 people experiencing homelessness, but by January 2020 the number rose to 66,433. The city of Los Angeles counted 36,165 in 2019, and 41,290 in 2020.

The county received an exemption from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and was not required to conduct a 2021 count due to the pandemic. The decision was made after LAHSA determined it was not safe to gather 8,000 volunteers, given guidance from the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health and taking into account stay-at-home orders and curfews due to COVID-19.

The Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority is seeking volunteers for the 2021 count. People can register at theycountwillyou.org.

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