John 14:2, Inc 

Putting Veterans First- Keeping Veterans First

Overview of Homelessness

 

About one-third of the adult homeless population have served their country in the Armed Services. Current population estimates suggest that about 107,000 Veterans (male and female) are homeless on any given night and perhaps twice as many experience homelessness at some point during the course of a year. Many other Veterans are considered near homeless or at risk because of their poverty, lack of support from family and friends, and dismal living conditions in cheap hotels or in overcrowded or substandard housing.

 

Right now, the number of homeless male and female Vietnam era Veterans is greater than the number of service persons who died during that war -- and a small number of Desert Storm veterans are also appearing in the homeless population.  Although many homeless Veterans served in combat in Vietnam and suffer from PTSD, at this time, epidemiologic studies do not suggest that there is a causal connection between military service, service in Vietnam, or exposure to combat and homelessness among Veterans.  Family background, access to support from family and friends, and various personal characteristics (rather than military service) seem to be the stronger indicators of risk of homelessness.

 

       Research
 
Research has shown that 60% to 80% of homeless veterans are addicted to alcohol or other drug: 15% suffer from PTSD.
 A Department of Justice study shows that over 12% of veterans who have served time in state prisons experienced homelessness during the year before incarceration.
The average homelessness veteran has been on the streets for 4 months and has a sporadic work history over the last three years .
Female veterans are the fastest growing percentage of the veteran population, now 15% and have much higher barriers to re-entering the work force such as sexual trauma, domestic violence, and child custody. 30% of veterans returning from OIF and OEF test positive and other emotional illnesses.

"When the tour is over and the veteran returns home"

 

According to the National Coalition for Homeless Veterans, homelessness results when individuals cannot resolve life's basic issues without assistance. Generally, these problems can be grouped into three categories: health issues, economic hardships, and lack of affordable housing. These issues impact all homeless individuals.

 

However, veterans face additional challenges when trying to overcome these obstacles-prolonged separation from traditional supports such as family and close friend, highly stressful training and occupational demands that can affect their personality, self esteem, and ability to communicate with people in the civilian sector after their separation from military occupational specialties into civilian work force is often problematic.

Over 100,000 Homeless Veterans

 

The Department of Veterans Affairs reports that about one-third of the adult population has served  their country in the Armed Services. Current population estimates suggest that about 131,000 Veteran (male and female) are homeless on any given night and perhaps twice as many experience homelessness at some risk because of their poverty, lack of support from family and friends, and dismal living conditions in cheap hotels or overcrowded sub standard housing.