The Alhambra Police Department has released preliminary numbers from last month's homeless count, with volunteers counting 13 homeless individuals over the age or 24, and one individual between the ages of 18 and 24.
The homeless count is a countywide initiative, organized by the Los Angeles County Homeless Services Authority. LAHSA does this count every year in order to determine how to allocate resources in combatting homelessness. Last year's count determined the number of homeless people growing in L.A. County growing by 5.7 percent, for a total of 47,000 individuals.
LAHSA has yet to release their final numbers for 2017, which they calculate based on a formula, according to the Alhambra Police Department's January newsletter. Alhambra's homeless count took place on January 24, with 74 people participating and either driving or walking through the city's 26 census tracts.
The release of these numbers coincides with the city of Alhambra partnership's with Pasadena-based Union Station Homeless Services to conduct outreach to people living on Alhambra's streets. Outreach worker Amber Follett spoke in front of the Alhambra City Council on Monday to explain what she's been doing in her first week and a half on the job.
"Basically, what I'm trying to do is build a relationship with them," said Follett. "I get to know them, I get to know their stories, their backgrounds, their needs, their wants as human beings, and try to match them with the appropriate services."
Follett explained that she had so far met with first responders and other city officials, and was starting on intake for a homeless individual she had met with three times.
Alexis Boothby, Union Station's CES outreach coordinator, expressed optimism about "putting a dent" in reducing the size of Alhambra's homeless population. "I think it's a very manageable number that you guys have here," she said.
Boothby also spoke about Measure H, a March 7 ballot initiative that would raise the L.A. County sales tax by a quarter of a cent to provide money for homeless services. "I really think that with that funding we really have a chance to actually end homelessness in L.A. County."
Below are the Alhambra Police Department's preliminary numbers:
Individuals over the age of 24: 13
Individuals between 18-24 of age: 1
Number of cars: 10
Number of vans: 3
Number of Campers/RV’s: 4
Number of tents: 1
Number of makeshift shelters: 10
And the full newsletter: